(Newspapers of Ohio)

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1850-1859 Articles

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Articles Index   |   Painesville Tel.  |   Painesville Rep.  |   Chardon Spectator


Vol. XX.                                   Norwalk, Ohio, Tues., Jan. 1, 1850.                                   No. 51.

Mormon  State.

William Smith, brother to the founder and Prophet, now the self-styled head of the church of Latter Day Saints, asserts in a communication to the Cincinnati Commercial, that the Salt Lake Mormons will not be content with anything less than a free and independent government. He in addition states that the men named as officers for this government, are men who have taken the following oath, with others equally treasonable:

"You do solemnly swear in the presence of Almighty God, his holy angels, and these witnesses, that you will avenge the blood of Joseph Smith, on this nation, and teach the same to your children; and that you will, from this time, henceforth and forever, begin and carry out hostilities against the nation, and to keep the same intent a profound secret now and forever. -- So help you God.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. 35.                             Canton, Ohio, Jan. 2, 1850.                             No. 37.


                                                  St. Louis, Nov. 29, 1849.
Editors Ohio State Journal:

J. H. Kinkead has arrived in this city from the Salt Lakes. He left from them on the 19th October, with thirty-five companions and met with no accident. The snow is deep on the plains.

A treaty of peace has been effected between the Military at Fort Laramie and the Pawnees.

A new colony of Mormons has been formed, 700 miles south of Salt Lake City. -- Twenty-five Mormon preachers came with Kinkead. They are sent to preach Mormonism to all the world.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. V.                             Cleveland, Ohio, Friday, January 4, 1850.                             No. 234.


Washington, Dec. 31.      
Numerous memorials and petitions were presented -- among them one from the citizens of Kentucky, claiming to be successors of Joe Smith the Mormon Prophet, objecting to the establishment of the Government of Deseret, and charging the people of the city of the Salt Lake with treasonable designs, they having taken a secret oath to avenge the death of Joe Smith upon the nation, and to pursue that design until the end of time.

Mr. Underwood read, in connection with the memorial, an extract of a statement made in the St. Louis Republican, that the citizens of Deseret were lawlessly trying the citizens of Missouri on the charge of aiding in the expulsion of the Mormons from the State of Missouri, and that they were exacting duties upon the effects of California emigrants, in passing through their city.

Mr. Underwood thought the statement gave coloring to the memorial.

Mr. Douglass had seen the statement, and interrogated Mr. Babbett, the Representative from Deseret, who explained that the citizens of the Salt Lake having formed a Government, found it necessary to establish a means of Revenue -- and had imposed a duty upon all goods brought into the city, whether by Mormons or others, but no duty was levied on property going through. -- The memorial was referred to the Committee on Territories.

Note: The above mentioned "citizens of Kentucky," were merely a few followers of "Patriarch" William Smith. See the notice in the Huron Reflector of Jan 1st.


Vol. VI.                           Defiance, Ohio, Saturday, January 12, 1850.                           No. 20.

Salt  Lake  Basin.

MORMONS. -- The St. Louis Republican, of the 4th instant, has some late information from the Great Salt Lake, derived from a Mr. Forsyth, who had just arrived at St. Louis from the Lake, which he left about the last of September.

When he left the settlement the most of the emigrants, including all the early trains, had gone forward to California. Of this number was Gen. Wilson, as Indian agent, and his party. A number of emigrants, however, expected to pass the winter at Salt Lake City and Fort Bridger. The Mormons, Mr. Forsyth says, have discovered a route occupying only some twenty or thirty days to cross the desert; and Sierra Nevada, on which there is an abundance of wood and water at every stage, and of easy crossing. Parties of Mormons had made the whole distance from the Sacramento to the Salt Lake, with packed mules, in fifteen days.

Major Stansberry, on the U. S. topographical corps, with his party, had arrived in the Great Basin. It was understood that, under orders of the United States government, he would make a survey of the Lost Lake and the various streams traversing the Salt Basin. His mission was not favorably regarded by the settlers.

Money was plenty in the Basin, and to this may be added the fact that the Mormons have established a mint of their own, at which a large amount of the California gold dust has been coined. They have issued coin of various denominations, to the amount of $20 pieces.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. VIII.                             Chardon, Ohio,  January 15, 1850.                             No. 10.

                  From the Washington Republic.
The Mormons of Deseret.

The readers of this paper have doubtless noticed, in the Congressional proceedings, the presentation in the Senate on Monday last, of a memorial of Wm. Smith and Isaac Sheen, claiming to be the legitimate presidents of the Church of Latter-Day Saints, and twelve other individuals of that community, now settled in the valley of the Salt Lake, with having taken an oath to avenge on the people and Government of this country, the murder of Joseph Smith, and with a determination now to carry that oath in[to] effect; and further accusing them of grossly immoral conduct, by adopting the doctrine of polygamy, &c.

Now, in relation to this matter, it is not improbable that these charges are exagerated and untrue, and such as could not stand the test of calm judicial investigation. We have no sympathies or regards for this Mormon people; but, judging from what we have formerly heard and latterly known of them, we deem these accusations to be entirely absurd and impossible.

In the first place, if we remember aright, this Wm. Smith, the first petitioner, is a brother of the celebrated Joseph Smith, who originally presided over the Mormons. At the time of Joseph's death, he presented himself to the Mormons, claiming to be the legitimate successor of his deceased brother; but the Mormon people refused to recognize him in that capacity. But, as we have been informed, inasmuch as he was a brother of one who was highly cherished among them, they consented to afford him protection and sustenance for a time; but his conduct at length becoming, as they allege, more and more dissolute, he was expelled from the pale of their church. Smith's hierarchical asperations, his subsequent expulsion from the Mormon church, sufficiently explain his present hostility in that community.

It will be recollected, when the Mormons were on their way to the far west, fleeing from the persecutions which they had suffered in Illinois and Missouri, overtures were made to them by the United States officers, under instructions from our government, inviting them to join in the hostilities which were going to be waged against the Mexican republic. Would this have been the case had they sworn to avenge their wrongs against the government and people of the United States? We find them now knocking at our doors for admission into our Union, at a time when another populous and less remote community are in no hurry for such a consummation. Does this look like settled hostility to the United States? We think not.

The objections urged against this people on the score of their grasping for territory, and their immoral practices, we are inclined to believe, are of an equally fragile tenure. With Texas and California claiming an area much larger than they have actually occupied, it is not surprising that Deseret should do the same. We believe after all, that the people of Deseret will be willing to take such limits as Congress may choose to assign to them. Can the same be said of other States which have applied for admission or been received into the Union? As to the polygamy charged against this people, we consider it almost too absurd to merit notice. That a people, the principal portion of whom have been born and brought up in the United States, and the next largest [part of whom --------- ------- ------ ---- --------- --------- ----- -------] the constitution under which they ask admission as a state, than which we have not seen one more lucid or better arranged in any of the states of this Union.

Note 1: It seems unlikely that the above text was entirely the product of a non-Mormon Washington editor's pen. The overly sympathetic writer know far too much about the "dissolute" William Smith's activities, to have not been heavily coached in his writing about that former LDS leader, etc.

Note 2: In some years this newspaper carried a masthead which read "Geauga Republic." The generic "Geauga Republican" name is used here for the entire run of the publication, until it was re-named the "Geauga Democrat."


The Daily Sanduskian.

Vol. II.                          Sandusky, Ohio, Thursday, January 17, 1850.                          No. 228.

From the St. Louis Republican, Dec. 28.


The difficulty between the Mormons and Missourians --
California Emigrants -- New Mormon colony -- Pawnee treaty, etc.

Mr. J. H. Kinkead, of this city, arrived here a day or two since from the Salt Lake Valley. He left that Valley, in company with thirty-five others, on the 19th October. Of this number some twenty-five were Mormon preachers, sent out by the Church to preach their faith in various quarters of the world. We learn from Mr. Kinkead, that the Mormon colony at the Valley of the Salt Lake was in a prosperous and happy condition. The crops had been abundant, and they had carried on an excellent traffic with the emigrants, receiving from them many articles of which they stood in need, and supplying them with various articles of produce. The Mormons uniformly treated the emigrants in a hospitable manner. Mr. Kinkead contradicts, as we supposed would be the case, the report of difficulties between the Mormons and Mr. Pomeroy, of Lexington, and Gen. Wilson, growing out of old feuds between the Missourians and Mormons. It is probable that the report had its origin in difficulties between Mr. Pomeroy and his teamsters, who were discharged from his employ at Salt Lake City. They made charges against him, and he demanded an investigation. A complete examination was had before the Court in the Mormon Church, and the result was a full acquittal of all charges against him. * * *

Capt. Stansbury was prosecuting his surveys, and met with every assistance from the Mormons. He will make a complete survey of the Salt Lake, and of the whole country around it; and his report, it is believed, will possess great interest.

All persons offering merchandise for sale at Salt Lake City are required to take out license -- that on liquors amounts to fifty per cent, on the original cost, and was really intended to prohibit the sale altogether.

In coming in, the company first met with snow about a hundred miles the other side of Fort Kearny, and afterward it covered the ground from six to eighteen inches.

Major Dougherty's train of wagons returning from the transportation of stores to Fort Kearny, was overtaken by the snow, and great numbers of his animals perished from the cold. Wagons were abandoned on the plains, and many of the teamsters were frost bitten. We have already mentioned the serious accident to one of Major Dougherty's transportation trains, by the burning of the prairies. So suddenly was the fire brought upon the encampment, by a change of the wind, that 150 head of cattle were burned to death or died very soon afterwards.

The Indians were quiet all along the route. At Fort Laramie, the barracks for the accommodation of the troops were progressing with great rapidity, and began to assume a very handsome appearance. A treaty of peace had been concluded between the Pawnees and the authorities at Fort Kearny, and the Indians had gone out on a hunt.

Note: The following Republican paragraphs were excluded in the Sanduskian's reprint: "Mr. Pomeroy remained there some time, in the enjoyment of the confidence of the Mormons. Gen. Wilson was not only not badly treated, but he was recognized as a Government officer, and was consulted as to the best plan of obtaining a political government for that territory. --- Messrs. Pomeroy, Infelt of St. Joseph, and Lee of Lexington, were to have left between the 10th and 15th of November, for California, taking the Southern route, in the expectation of being able to accomplish the journey by early spring, and without much exposure. --- The Mormons were forming a new colony in the Sand Pitch [sic] Valley, about two hundred miles south of Salt Lake City. It is represented as remarkably fertile, and the climate as being very fine. About one hundred wagons were dispatched hither, with provisions and property, and from fifty to one hundred families had accompanied them."


Vol. V.                             Cleveland, Ohio, Thursday, January 17, 1850.                             No. 245.


Astounding developments of fraud in New York: --
Supposed conspiracy to Murder, &c.

The New York Tribune gives the following notice of Bennett, and summary of the offence charged against him: --

The astounding developments of fraud and conspiracy now breaking upon the public, have created the most intense excitement, and no one hardly knows but he may see his most intimate friends involved in the meshes of justice at any moment. The case of Drury, nothing of which has yet been legally developed, still lies like an incubus upon the public mind -- that of Joseph C. Ashley is hardly less important -- when another bomb explodes at tbe Tombs, and the smoke clears away,we behold, to our utter astonishment the widely known Mormon General James Arlington Bennett, indicted by the grand jury for a heavy forgery.

This man was the proprietor of a fine estate and magnificent mansion, near New Utrecht" L.I., on the Bath road. He is an Irishmnn of obscure birth, but had interjected "Arlington" between his original names, and assumed to be of noble blood. He was formerly a teacher of book-keeping in this city, but at the time of the Mormon exodus from this quarter, he took up his staff and turned his feet towards the New Canaan at Nauvoo.

James Arlington Bennett remained sufficiently long among the Mormon community to prove his shrewdness, for he became a general. He returned to this quarter in 1836, or thereabouts, covered with his Mormon honors, and put up the mansion at New Utrecht. No one doubted his honesty, while the style of his living raised him above suspicion, by its evidence of the abundance of his means. His extravagant habits, however, soon disposed of his surplus funds; and he was forced to mortgage his property to supply his wants. He pitched upon John Anthon, a wealthy lawyer, of this city for this transaction, and obtained from him a loan of $8,000 on his house and grounds, at 7 per cent. Sometime after this, however, Jas. Foster, Jr., a wealthy gentleman of 40 Bond street, over bid Mr. Anthon, and offered to loan Bennett at the rate of 6 per cent. Bennett then left Anthon and gave a mortgage to Mr. Foster for $6,000, but latterly Mr. Foster raised his interest to 7 per cent, whereupon Bennett threatened to leave him.

These loans, however; did not relieve Bennett, and it was while he was thus floundering in his pecuniary embarrassments that he fell in with Drury and Ashley, and became a party to many of their plans. Bennett, however, had an advantage over the other two. He lived in good, odor with the world, and none would have dreamed of looking underneath his princely style for the figure of a felon.

It would appear from the account published in the Police Gazette, that with the help of One Eyed Thompson, Drury, Ashley, and perhaps others, Bennett has been for a long time living by the most unfair means, which has finally resulted in his being arrested on a charge of forging a note of $9,6000 on Count Foster. The circumstances of the suspicion and arrest are curious, and seem to be a sequence of the arrest of Drury for the torpedo business. In the course of the investigations which led to Bennett's arrest, developments were, made which point strongly toward a premeditated murder of Foster by some of the persons who are now in the hands of the law.

There are other stories of transfer and retransfer of property between Bennett and his son by which the former got $8,000 from Mr. Athon on a mortgage of the premises; that to make Mr. Anthon believe the reconveyance to be all right. One Eyed Thompson personated Bennett's son, the latter being a minor and unable to make a legal transfer of the property on that account.

Altogether this is one of the most intricate and important cases, in connection with the Drury and Ashley operations, that have ever claimed public attention. Bennett has been committed to prison in default of $20,000 bail.

Note: See the Defiance Democrat of Feb. 9, 1850 for more details.



Vol. 35.                             Canton, Ohio, Jan. 23, 1850.                             No. 39.

Reported for the Ohio Repository.

                                                  St. Louis, January 18.
From Salt Lake -- A letter dated Salt Lake City, Oct. 18, says the Mormons from California have brought much gold. All kinds of merchandize are high and scarce. There are only two small stores in the valley, which contains a population of 15,000 persons. The snow was on the mountains all around the valley, and at the South Pass it was 4 feet deep. A rumor prevailed that a band of Missouri emigrants had killed some Squaws of the Snake Indian tribe in the mountains, & in consequence that tribe were hostile to the whites. They had a battle with another band of emigrants, subsequently. Livingston and Kinkhead, traders at Salt Lake, cleared $10,000 in two weeks; having sold all their merchandize within that time. Mr. Rose of New York, sold $5000 worth of goods in 4 days. The grain crops had been good, and the country was prosperous.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. VI.                           Defiance, Ohio, Saturday, February 2, 1850.                           No. 23.


The monetary notions of the Mormons at their Great Salt Lake settlement, are no less peculiar, it appears, than their ideas of society and religion. We have a verious curious coin in our possession, which is manufactured and extensively circulated among that remarkable people, and quite to the disparagement, travelers tell us, of every other species of gold currency. Of all the fanciful forms into which our golden wealth is wrought, this sainted shape excells in singularity. Its weight is about 15 pwts. Troy, its current worth, among the Mormons, twenty dollars. Its circumference is that of a Spanish half doubloon. One side bears the inscription 'Holiness to the Lord,' with the All-seeing Eye, surmounted by the prophet's cap; on the reverse appear the initials C. S. L. C. P. C., the grasp of fellowship, with the date (1849) and the value of the piece. It is clumsy, and in execution without merit.

Note: The precious metal intended for gold coinage requires the admixture of a small percentage of base metal, in order to give the soft gold some minimal durability. The Mormons, it is reported, were rather overgenerous with copper, etc., in concocting their mint alloys in Deseret -- to the result that they could make an immediate 10% profit, simply by exchanging their locally minted coins (having the appearance of gold), for the official (purer and relatively weightier) gold money issued by the U. S. Government.


Vol. V.                             Cleveland, Ohio, Thursday, February 6, 1850.                             No. 262.

Polygamy  at  the  Salt  Lake.

The New Orleans Delta publishes a letter from the Salt Lake, the capital of the Mormons of Deseret, in which the writer confirms the statement previously made, that under the Mormon narital law, a man may have as many wives as he can support. He says:

"The successor to Joe Smith is a man by the name of Brigham Young, about forty-five years old, a pretty cute fellow, a Yankee would say. -- He has the largest number of wives of any in the settlement -- only twenty-six. This is not a large number, considering he had to take all the wives of Joe Smith that could not get other husbands. Some that have come under my observation have had eleven, five, three, two, one. These are facts, beyond cavil; and the only tie that binds these people together is bigamy."

The same writer describes them as poor, industrious, and temperate in the use of ardent liquors.

Note: See the Huron Reflector of March 19th for a more complete reprint.


Vol. VI.                           Defiance, Ohio, Saturday, February 9, 1850.                           No. 24.


Gen. James Arlington Bennett, formerly connected with the Mormons, has been arrested for forgery in New York. Several others are implicated. The morals of New York must be in a precious condition, as would appear from the following.

The New York Mirror, speaking of 'more astounding developments' of crime in that city, connected with recent arrests, says 'lawyers, merchants, and even clergymen' are suspected of being mixed up in 'business transactions' with these counterfeiters, thieves, and assassins; and there is no knowing where the lightning of justice will strike next.

Note 1: James A. Bennet (or Bennett) was reportedly baptized by Brigham Young, on a beach of the Atlantic Ocean, during the mid-1840s. Bennet later repudiated the event as a sort of joke upon Brigham. According to Elder Lyndon Cook's 1980 book, The Words of Joseph Smith, James A. Bennet's baptism as an LDS came in 1843.

Note 2: Bennet was Smith's initial choice as a running mate in his ill-fated bid for the U. S. Presidency in 1844. In 1845 the Quincy Whig said of Bennet: "He has recently been among them [the Mormons] and in his bombastic manner, told the Mormons what he could do with 20 pieces of cannon and 12 or 15,000 men... If 'Gen. James Arlington Bennett,' is the brave and skillful officer he boasts, why does he not stay with his valiant friends, the Mormons, and control their actions? His Generalship is all displayed on paper." -- After the twelve "benevolent heads" running the LDS Church made it clear to Bennet that he could not assume a leading role within the ranks of their Nauvoo Legion, he returned to New York, where he appears to have forgotten his Mormon baptism altogether.


Vol. XXI.                               Norwalk, Ohio, Feb. 12, 1850.                               No. 5.


==> The new territory of Deseret which is anxiously waiting to become a Sovereign State of the Union, appears to possess a very liberal minded population; the Mormon creed permitting a plurality of wives. The President of that interesting Republic is said to have thirty. Elder Pratt, from Boston, more moderate in his matrimonial notions has only seven, and even one of them has run away with a California soldier.

Note: As far back as 1842 the public press was accusing top Mormon leaders of practicing bigamy, adultery or polygamy, under the guise of "peculiar" religious teachings. The Church officials denied these allegations prior to their leaving Nauvoo, and for several years thereafter. But, while on the trail west, and once settled at Salt Lake, the saintly leaders could not well hide their "patriarchal order of marriage" from prying Gentile eyes. The years 1850-52 must have been particularly embarrassing ones for truly honest Mormons, in that reports of LDS polygamy spread through the popular prints much faster than the "Lord's Anointed" in Deseret could issue sundry denials of their secret marital practice. Eventually all of this "lying in the name of the Lord" ceased and by 1853 plural marriage was a topic inciting zealous defense among the Mormons, rather than uneasy refutations.



Vol. 35.                             Canton, Ohio, March 6, 1850.                             No. 46.


A Mr. Snow, brother of Z. Snow, Esq. of this place, arrived here on Friday last, on his was to [Denmark?], in Europe as a Missionary. The Mormons appear to be prosperous in their new home at the Salt Lake.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. VI.                           Defiance, Ohio, Saturday, March 9, 1850.                           No. 28.


==> The report circulating in the newspapers, that the Mormons at Deseret allow polygamy, and permit the most licentious and depraving practices, is pronounced by the Washington papers as totally false, and without the slightest foundation.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXI.                               Norwalk, Ohio, Tuesday, March 19, 1850.                               No. 10.

From  Deseret.

Late accounts have been received from the Mormon Country. Numerous deputies started upon their missions to England, France, Italy, Denmark and Sweden. They speak confidently of their success in these countries and where they place before the laboring population, such as that in England, pressed down to the earth by both Church and State, the prospect of a home, a portion of the soil to cultivate, and of a sufficiency of the common wants of humanity, it is not wonderful that they should be ready to embrace the doctrines of faith even as extravagant as that of the Mormons and be numbered among the "Latter Day Saints." To them any belief that will rescue them from starvation must be acceptable. The estimate of the Mormons is, that their number in England is now 50,000.

It is thought that very few of the emigrants to California will winter in the Valley of the Salt Lake; those who were too late for the northern route, took the southern, and but few are left.

Goods of every description are needed much in the Valley, and would meet with a ready sale. There is gold enough among them to pay for all goods sent to them. Cows and sheep, if young and healtrhy, bring a good price and are much sought for. Chickens and hogs they have in plenty, but not many turkeys or geese. The emigration from Iowa to Deseret will, probably, next summer double its present population.

The Mormons of Salt Lake.

A Correspondent of the New Orleans Crescent , of the 18th inst., writing from Salt Lake and speaking of the people says:

They are from every state of the Union -- healthy, though pale and poor about the face, cheek [bones] apparent. They are industrious and temperate in the use of ardent spirits. Probably one reason is the high price of it (as one-half of the selling price of liquor sold here has to go to the city.) They claim no allegiance to the United States, but call themselves Mormons and many think they are in a Mormon country. -- They are generally ignorant, and seldom think for themselves, except it is in driving a bargain, but appear enthusiastic as regards their faith. There is a great number of settlers from Alabama and Mississippi, who have come to this place with their negroes, and hold them here the same as they did formerly. The successor to Joe Smith -- Brigham Young, is about forty-five years old. He has the largest number of wives of any one in the settlement, only 26. This is not a large number, considering he had to take all the wives of Joe Smith that could not get other husbands. Some that have come under my observation have had eleven, five, three, two and one. These are facts, beyond cavil; and the only tie that binds these people together is bigamy. The spectacle is revolting, and in the course of a few years there will be a dozen children, all of the same age, having the same father, but different mothers. To what part of the world can they go and be respected? -- nowhere. To be a Mormon is to be all that is base and vile. All the ties that bind the opposite sexes together in mutual confidence and affection are trampled under foot by designing men, to gratify their own lustful passions, and the ignorant think they cannot be doing right without following the example of their high-priest, Young, and their twelve apostles. The Mormons have to give one-tenth of the products of their farms or other business to the church, and also the tenth working day the whole year, making twenty per cent, -- a pretty heavy tax most people would think. The object is to get as much money into the treasury as possible, so as to be able to carry out their plan, which is to have a line of settlements to the Pacific from this place, having its terminus in the southern part of Upper California, hoping to be able to diseminate their religion in the newly acquired territory.

Note: It is interesting to see that the top Mormons' polygamy was being openly reported in the public press at almost exactly the same time that prominent LDS missionaries operating in the eastern US and in England (like Apostle John Taylor), were denying the existence of any such thing among the Saints.



Vol. ?                         Cincinnati, Ohio,  Saturday, March 30, 1850.                        No. ?

Opposition  to  Deseret

There was some difficulty in the way of just legalizing the Mormon government of Deseret. -- Deseret is a Mormon word, and there is a strong prejudice against Mormonism in all the Northwestern States, which would compel many Northwestern members to vote against it. The Mormons, soon after the death of Joe Smith, divided; the Mormons remaining in the States of the Union being violently opposed to the Mormons of Salt Lake, and charging the Salt Lake Mormons with having taken an oath of eternal hostility to the Government of the United States; pledging themselves to overthrow this Government whenever they shall have the power to do so. There are many patriotic Mormons in the States of Wisconsin, Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky, Indiana, Ohio, and Pennsylvania, who who have formed many churches, and who are all firmly believing that the Salt Lake Mormons have taken the oath of hostility to the United States. -- A vote, therefore, approving the acts of the Mormons on the Salt Lake, by adopting their government and its name, would be deemed an approval of this doctrine; and for this reason the name (Deseret) as well as the government itself must be discarded.

Notes: (forthcoming)


ns. Vol. II.                             Columbus, Ohio, Thurs., April 11, 1850.                             No. 736.

From the Daily Alta California of Feb. 9.

The  Mormon  State.

When the memorial from the delegates of the Salt Lake settlement was road on the floor of the Senate of California, accompanied as it was, most mal apropos, by a verbal message from Gov. Burnett, a member of that honorable body quickly arose and offered a resolution to lay both documents on the table, which was adoptod with a proper show of resentment. In the House the petition and message fared no better, and although we suffered this action to pass uncommented upon at the time, we cordially approved the spirit of our Legislature, and now applaud the prompt, decisive and dignified measures by which its indignation was made manifest.

We had little, faith in the State government created by the the Salt Lake people, and were reluctant to credit the voluminous reports which had found their way into the eastern press long ere the tidings of conventional deliberation by the Mormons had come to our ears. Our delegates had assembled at Monterey to frame a State Constitution, and it is possible, indeed quite likely, that a fore-warning of this political movement had reached the auriculars of the saints on Salt Lake shores, before an organization of any kind was contemplated by them. Certain it is, that the proceedings of a body convened for purposes similar to our own, scarcely without the rocky environs and natural boundaries of California, were prevented by inexplicable causes from becoming known to her inhabitants until four months had elapsed and a distance of over five thousand miles had been traversed. And now that tho 50,000 people of Salt Lake and the adjacent territory have created a State government, and defined the boundaries of Deseret, as this new aspirant for political honors has been styled, it is proper that we should express our convictions.

It comes with a very bad grace from a people who renounced the government under which the greater part of their lives have been passed, but in view of the astonishing events which have occurred since their separation from the Union, to live as outcasts on the lonely shores of Salt Lake, it may scarcely excite surprise that the Mormons should seek restoration to the protection of our government. The sweep of emigration to the Pacific coast dwelt not in the prophetic vision of the Latter Day Saints, and dumb were the oracles of their peculiar faith in the foreshadowing of a destiny so mighty. But the strong arm of the republic had girted them about, and but the alternative remained to assume, the importance of a State and enjoy the priviliges of a distinct representation in the halls of our national legislature. Simultaneous with the framing of our Constitution, one was also prepared, with indecent haste, by the Desereters. Their boundaries have been proclaimed, and their representatives despatched to sue for admission into the American confederacy of States. But now the perplexing question seems to have arisen in the minds of the Mormons -- how is the new State of Deseret to be maintained! Occupying a position removed from the highway of commerce, without one single outlet or channel -- its rivers flowing into the vast brine, from which there is no visible escape; shut in by an almost impassable mountain range -- a formidable barrier to communication with the Pacific for nine months in the year; boasting but indifferent agricultural resources, even did there exist a market accessible -- these are but a few of the disadvantages possessed by Deseret which might be enumerated. It is not to be wondered at then, that delegates from the deluded Salt Lake people should appear in California on the mission which has honored Gen. Wilson and Mr. Amasa Lyman.

It is unnecessary to advert to the absurdity of the memorial presented by them; our Legislature have effectually and properly dealt with that.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. VIII.                             Chardon, Ohio,  April 16, 1850.                             No. 23.


The Washington correspondent of the Journal of Commerce writes:

"As to Deseret, I have seen a memoir, or rather heard it read, giving a very minute and satisfactory account of that region; and it appears that, with the exception of some inconsiderable portion, it is a barren waste, and incapable of sustaining, at any time, a large population. The present population is only fifteen thousand, and the emigration for the next year is estimated at twenty thousand only. -- I learn too, that in consequence of the division of the Mormons into two separate and hostile sects, the majority of them will never emigrate to Deseret. The Mormons of Deseret are adverse to a Territorial Government, because they do not wish to receive civil rulers, governors, judges, &c. &c., from Washington...

Note: In some years this newspaper carried a masthead which read "Geauga Republic." The generic "Geauga Republican" name is used here for the entire run of the publication, until it was re-named the "Geauga Democrat."


Vol. XXI.                               Norwalk, Ohio, Tuesday, April 23, 1850.                               No. ?

California  News.

Deseret and California. -- Gov. Burnett sent a message to the California Legislature in February, that caused some talk. It appears that the Mormons in the Valley of the Salt Lake elected two delegates to the California State Convention, but they did not arrive until after the convention had adjourned. They then petitioned the Legislature to take steps for the calling of a new Convention to frame a constitution which shall include within the boundaries of the State, the basin of the Salt Lake, &c.

The Mormons avowed themselves opposed to slavery and teh delegates advanced this as a principal reason why they desired Deseret to be included in California. They stated that a provision in the constitution prohibiting slavery would save the Congress from much turmoil and therefore urged the including at once of Deseret. -- Gov. Burnett's special message on their petition gave many reasons why their request should not be granted, and the Legislature disposed of the petition by laying it on the table. The Mormons will have to form a State Constitution and come in on their own hook.   Cleveland Herald.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. ?                         Cincinnati, Ohio,  Monday, May 20, 1850.                        No. ?

  (Notice of William Smith's excommunication of Isaac Sheen
-- under construction)


Note 1: Although the full details and exact sequence of events leading up to the rift between William Smith and Elder Isaac Sheen remain very obscure, it appears that about the middle of May, 1850, William sent for publication in the Cincinnati Commercial, a notice declaring that Isaac Sheen was excommunicated from the Smithite church. Probably William sent this notice from his home at Palestine (Shelbourn) in Lee Co., Illinois, after he learned that Isaac had written a letter to the Hon. R. H. Stanton, disassociating himself from William Smith's various remonstrances against the admission of Mormon Deseret as a state of the Union. The Commercial had previously called William "a noble fellow," and perhaps he felt the editor would be a little sympathetic to his cause. Isaac wrote his letter to Stanton, from Cincinnati, on May 4th and it was published, in Washington. D. C., on May 17th. In this May 4th letter Elder Sheen had some very hostile things to say about "the hypocrisy, licentiousness, treachery, deceit, slanders, and lies of William Smith."

Note 2: Isaac Sheen's turbulent dissatisfaction with William Smith appears to have come to a head after Sheen received a letter from Smith, dated Apr. 18, 1850, and evidently written from Lee Co., Illinois. This letter, which was published in the Cincinnati Commercial of May 22nd, attempts to justify the "spiritual doctrine" with the explanation that "the ancient patriarchs had more wives than one," etc., etc. Sheen's reply to William Smith has been lost, but it must have been so hostile and damning as to make William repent with words like "I... offer my life as a sacrifice." William's repentance came in a letter dated "Shelburn, Lee Co., Ill., April 29, 1850," which was published in the Cincinnati Daily NonPareil on about May 21st. Sheen did not accept William Smith's repentance. He went ahead and wrote his letter to Congress, and Smith retaliated by excommunicating the disobedient elder.

Note 3: The context in which the split between Smith and Sheen occurred is explained a little on pages 14-15 of a booklet written by Sheen's son, in 1889: "In February, 1849, Isaac Sheen began the publication of a small paper devoted exclusively to 'lineal rights' of the 'Smith family.'... Through the visit and death of Otis Hobart it was learned that the 'devil' [polygamy] was in Texas [in Lyman Wight's group] and that William was not above suspicion. Father laid a plan to entrap him, and succeeded in getting a polygamous letter from William, who was then in Illinois. He immediately exposed... [Smith]; withdrew his name from the petition against the 'State of Deseret' and pulled up the 'Stake of Zion' in Covington... William's wife, Roxy, came to Covington and the result was that she gave into father's hands a lot of papers and books."



Vol. ?                                  Cincinnati, Ohio, May 21? 1850.                                  No. ?

Wm. Smith -- The Imposter.

Eds. Nonpareil: The subjoined letter will show that the statements which the imposter, Wm. Smith, is now circulating concerning me are false, and will in some degree explain the cause of my renunciation of him and his Church. The iniquity spoken of in the letter is a vindication of adultery and fornication by Wm. Smith. He claims that he has authority from God to raise up posterity from other men's wives, and says it will exalt them and their husbands in the eternal world. His repentance is base hypocrisy, which he proves by his late conduct.
                                            ISAAC SHEEN.
Covington, May 20, 1850.


                                                  Shelburn, Lee Co., Ill., April 29, 1850.

Brother Sheen: -- Do not let the devil triumph over us now; we have done a good work, and a very small matter would destroy it all. Br. Sheen, I claim protection at your hand; If I have done wrong in any respect I am willing to make restitution to the last farthing. I claim a right of trial according to the law of God face to face; if I have committed an offence show me my error in a christian spirit -- not the spirit of a savage. I can do no more than offer my body and life as a sacrifice. I shall come to see you -- I must have a talk with you. As to the letter you refer to, like many others, it was written with a view of your correcting what was wrong in doctrine. I am not a good scholar, nor am I a good writer. You was appointed my counselor not to destroy me, but to save me by counsel, and counsel is what I ask of you; and then if I commit an error in judgment I will retrace my steps. Now, Brother Sheen, I ask you in the name of God to hold until I can see you. I will, upon my sacred honor, make all things right.

I was wrong, and confess my error; will you forgive me? I ask it in the name of Jesus Christ. I have always esteemed you as an honest man, and have therefore entrusted you with my affairs and with my letters. I am more inclined than ever to favor your opinion about many things, yet it seems that I must learn by experience, and by the things that I suffer. I wish to do right, when I am made sensible of what is right. *  *  *  Now, Br. Sheen, I ask you again, give me a chance for repentance. *  *  *  Do not understand that I justify myself; no, not in the least. *  *  *  Brother Sheen, I want to see you now more than ever. I am determined by the grace of God to set my face against all sin, and do the full works of the law, God being my helper. I will do as I have said in this respect, if it takes my life. Every evil shall go by the board. I am resolved, so give me a chance, and I will do all that is in my power to reconcile your feelings. My letters, Brother Sheen, do not open them, but keep them safe for me. I do not wish that my wife should have the perusal of all my letters, She is easy excited; keep then those things sacred until I come. I hope that none of our difficulty will be named to her; that all may remain in quiet. As to the letter on marriage, I wrote it when I was quite sick, and I wish you to correct the errors, if any, and do it for my good and not for my injury. I can do no more than to offer my life as a sacrifice, which I am willing to do, and claim your protection.
                                                WILLIAM SMITH.

Note: The exact date and the full content of the above article is unknown. Probably it appeared in the Cincinnati Daily Nonpareil on May 21, 1850. The text is taken from a reprint which appeared in the June 26, 1850 issue of the Council Bluffs Frontier Guardian.



Vol. ?                        Cincinnati, Ohio, Wednesday, May 22, 1850.                        No. ?

                        For the Cincinnati Commercial.

William Smith - Fornication - Adultery.

MR. EDITOR: The statement of the Commercial this morning, concerning me are incorrect. Wm. Smith has not cut me off from his church. I have cut myself off, and intend to remain cut off eternally from such a hypocritical libertine. He has professed the greatest hostility to the plurality wife doctrine, but on the 18th ult., he told me that he had a right to raise up posterity from other men's wives. He said it would be an honor conferred upon them and their husbands, to allow him that privilege, and that they would thereby be exalted to a high degree of glory in eternity. He said that the Salt Lake Mormons had no authority to do such things, but that the authority belonged to him, and that I might have the same privilege. He offered me his wife on the same terms that he claimed a partnership in other men's wives. I told him instantly that I would have no more connection with him, and that such damnable iniquity, I never had, and never would participate in. I did not wait for him to cut me off, and he has no church in Covington to cut any one off. There is no person that acknowledges him in Covington except Mrs. ________, a married woman. Wm. Smith says that I have become a Salt Lake Mormon. This statement is false. I acknowledge allegiance to no church, neither Mormon nor anti-Mormon. I have witnesses to prove that Smith's statements concerning the Church Records are totally false; his wife, who has left him, in consequence of his licentiousness, has either taken them with her, or has disposed of them. I can prove that A. W. Babbitt was an enemy to me at the time that I renounced my connection with Wm. Smith. I find that Smith has caused me, by false representations, to misrepresent Mr. Babbitt and the Salt Lake Mormons, but I have no connection with their church, and never intend to have. I have in my possession a letter written by Mr. Smith, in which he advocates the plurality wife doctrine. I have another letter written by him on the 29th ult., in which he asks my forgiveness for his participation in such iniquity, and has determined to forsake it. Recent events show that this pretended repentance was base hypocrisy. Subjoined to this communication may be found an extract of his Fornication Letter.
                                ISAAC SHEEN.
Covington, Ky., May 20, 1850.


"My wife says that she will not go to Texas for fear of the spiritual doctrine. I have told her better, but all to no avail. The book of Covenants I have not with me, but suppose you refer to the law on marriage, that says a man shall have obe wife, &c. The ancient patriarchs had more wives than one. This was allowed by the law of God, or it would not have been so, and for priesthood purposes in propagating a multitude of those to whom the promises were given. There are two kinds of marriages -- first marriage by the law of God, and secondly, marriage by the law of man. It needs no argument to convince you that marriage consumated by the laws of man have no binding influence upon us, no further than our discretion is concerned, and is a part of the subject that I will notice in another place. But one thing here I wish you to notice in the argument, as I pass along, and that it is no where said in holy writ, that whatsoever man has joined together, let no man put asunder. The works of man you know will not stand when the refining fire comes. God is able to break our bands asunder, that have not been cemented by the sealing power of the gospel. In Mark, 10 ch., 2d and 12th verses, the subject assumes a different complexion. The question is -- has a man a right to marry her that is put away. My views run with the text in this respect, also to marry her that is put away, for the crime of fornication, as named in Matthew, 19th and 9th, he is guilty of adultery; in case this marriage was consumated in celestial order, or by the law of the authority of God, the holy Priesthood Marriages are made in heaven; if they are joined together on earth by God's own authority, hence a departure from this covenant would make the crime [of] guilt. Thousands in this world live together on contract, and call it marriage, and now for the solution of the text, Paul, to the Corinthians, says, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife. Then, of course, she must be his wife -- sealed to him by the law of God; but if she is unequally yoked and disunited in spirit, she then is not a wife, for no lawful marriage exists when the spirits are disunited. But it seems that Paul in the 1st verse of this 7th chapter, speaks of a crime, in its modified sense a little crime, and a little crime in the following manner: It is good for a man not to touch a woman, yet if he marries her it is no crime -- he avoids fornication. But in the 28th verse, he supposes a covenant to exist, as in the case of the thousands that now live, as they suppose they do, in marriage, yet are not married, not by the law of God; yet it seems a man has his virgin if he keeps her as well, but if he defile her, has committed no sin if he marry her. 12th v. says, if a man have a wife that believeth not, and she please to tarry, let her tarry. I condemn this saying, because they are unequally yoked, and this contradiction is too plain and palpable to believe that both sayings are from God, in fact, Paul says, that the Lord does not say these words. I say that if a woman lives with a man in disunion of spirits, they both of them are in transgression, and are guilty of the law of fornication.

Note 1: Elder Isaac Sheen (1810-1874) located in Cincinnati, Ohio in 1846. The following year William Smith, brother of Joseph Smith, parted ways with the Strangite church. Following this rupture with Strang, William expended a good deal of effort in visiting different branches of disaffected Mormons, including a group living in Cincinnati and across the river in Covington, Kentucky. By 1849 Isaac Sheen was acting as one of William Smith Counselors in the Smithite First Presidency, and editing its newspaper, the Melchisedek and Aaronic Herald, at Covington. In April, 1850 Sheen broke with Smith and became a Mormon without a leader for several years (see his letter in the Saturday Evening Post of Oct. 9, 1852). In 1859 Sheen joined the Reorganization and became the editor of its new publication, The Saints' Herald, which he published for several years at Cincinnati.

Note 2: In his Mormon Polygamy: A History, Richard S. Van Wagoner says of William Smith: "William lapsed into the same [polygamous] patterns when he joined the Strangites. Both he and John C. Bennett were excommunicated for immorality in the summer of 1847. Shortly afterwards, Smith formed his own church, in Lee County in northern Illinois. But his followers saw his religious polygamy as a cover-up for licentious promiscuity. Isaac Sheen, who severed himself from the movement in early 1850, referred to William as a 'hypocritical libertine.'"

Note 3: For more on the background of Isaac Sheen's religious break with William Smith, see John K. Sheen's 1889 booklet Polygamy, or the Veil Lifted. There the younger Sheen says of his father: "In February, 1849, Isaac Sheen began the publication of a small paper devoted exclusively to 'lineal rights' of the 'Smith family.' In June of that year a conference was held in Covington, Ky., and... a combination with Lyman Wight was made... William was not above suspicion [of wicked acts]. Father laid a plan to entrap him, and succeeded in getting a polygamous letter from William, who was then in Illinois. He immediately exposed 'the Elijah of the last dispensation;'... and pulled up the 'Stake of Zion' in Covington." At this time Elder Isaac Sheen also withdrew his name from the 1849 petition he and William Smith had signed the year before.

Note 4: John K. Sheen also says in his 1889 pamphlet: "William's wife, Roxy, came to Covington and the result was that she gave into father's hands a lot of papers and books." This interesting activity on the part of Roxie Ann Grant Smith is only slightly alluded to by Isaac Sheen in his communication to the Cincinnati Commercial; there Elder Sheen says: "I have witnesses to prove that Smith's statements concerning the Church Records are totally false; his wife, who has left him, in consequence of his licentiousness, has either taken them with her, or has disposed of them." These words appear to indicate that Roxie left Lee Co., Illinois about the middle of May, 1850 and eventually passed through Covington during her travels. While there (probably in the summer of 1850) Roxie gave Isaac Sheen William's trunk full of old papers and books. It was this valuable set of documents which William discovered to be missing from his home in Lee Co., Illinois, and which he accused Isaac Sheen of obtaining for resale to Almon W. Babbit, Sheen's notable Mormon brother-in-law. For more on the disposition of these papers, see John K. Sheen's 1889 booklet.


Vol. VI.                             Cleveland, Ohio, Tuesday, June 4, 1850.                             No. 55.

Interesting  from  California  Emigrants.

ST. LOUIS, June 3 - 4 P.M.       
Recent advices from Council Bluffs state that the California emigrants at St. Joseph, Kanesville and other points had, with few exceptions, left for the plains on the 1st.

A Mormon train consisting of two hundred wagons and between six and eight hundred persons, would leave Kanesville for Salt Lake about the first inst.

Alarming reports relative to the small pox and cholera almost daily reached the frontier towns from the emigrants on the plains. The reports were mostly brought in by emigrants who had become discouraged, and were returning, and were not generally believed.

A party of six emigrants returned and reported that Sullivan's company from Brunswick, with exceptions of three had all fallen victims to the cholera. The Callfornia caravan extended between two hundred and two huudred and fifty miles and always in sight of each other. Grass und water was abundant.

On the 27th ult., Kanesville and vicinity were visited by a tremenduous storm, unroofing several houses and doing much injury to the timber. The crops not sufficiently advanced to suffer. -- No lives lost.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXI.                               Norwalk, Ohio, Tuesday, July 2, 1850.                               No. 25.

Great  Salt  Lake.

Capt. Stansbury of the U. S. corps of Topographical Engineers employed in an examination of the region of the Great Salt Lake, in the Mormon Territory, reports the following interesting facts:

"We found that the whole western shore of the lake consists of immense level plains of soft mud, inaccessible within many miles of the water's edge to the feet of mules or horses, being traversed frequently by meandering rills of salt and sulphur, which apparently sink and seem to imbue and saturate the whole soil, rendering it miry and treacherous. These plains are but little elevated above the present level of the lake..." [lengthy report on the lake and its surroundings follows]

The opinion is expressed by Capt. S. from the knowledge he has gained, that the size of the lake has been much exaggerated and its depth overrated. That it has no outlet, is demonstrated beyond a doubt, and he feels convinced that it can never be of the slightest use for purposes of navigation. The water, for miles out from the shore, is bit a few inches in depth, and if there be any deep water, it must be in the middle. The Utah river, -- the Jordan, as the Mormons call it -- is too insignificant and too crooked to be of any use commercially. The greatest depth of the Utah Lake that Capt. S. found was sixteen feet; so that, for the purposes of a connected line of navigation, neither the river nor the lakes can be of the slightest utility. -- Further examination of the Lake, may however, modify his opinion. The river connecting these lakes is 48 miles in length.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. VI.                           Defiance, Ohio, Saturday, July 6, 1850.                           No. 45.


THE NAUVOO TEMPLE AGAIN DESTROYED. -- A fatality seems to attend the temple at Nauvoo. It was finished by the Mormons in 1845, was nearly destroyed by fire in 1848, and on the 27th of May a tremendous hurricane demolished the walls. The Icarian community of socialists, under Cabet, had purchased it, and were engaged in repairing it, with a view to fitting it up for schools, studying and meeting halls, and a great refectory for a thousand persons. The workmen were engaged on it, when the storm burst forth with such violence that the walls came tumbling down, and the workmen had to fly for their lives. Those walls that remained standing had to be pulled down. -- The surrounding buildings were also demolished, and in the wash-house, where sic Icarian women were washing, there was so sudden an inundation from the rising creek, that the women had to escape through the windows. The community are going to undertake the erection of another large and fine building.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. ?                           Sandusky, Ohio, Thursday, July 18, 1850.                           No. ?


The Pennsylvania Historical Society have just published a discourse by T. L. Kane giving an interesting account of his visit to the Mormon encampment in the western deserets. -- They were outcasts from Missouri and Illinois, who have founded the territory of Deseret. -- The following is an extract from the pamphlet:

"The Locust of the Salt Lake.  The shores of the Salt Lake are infested by a sort of insect pest, which claims a vile resemblance to the locust of the Syrian Dead Sea. Wingless, dumpy, black, swollen-headed, with bulging eye's in cases like goggles, mounted upon legs of steel wire and clock-spring, and with a general personal appearance that justified the Mormons in comparing him to a cross of the spider on the Buffalo, the Deseret cricket comes down from the mountains at a certain season of the year, in voracious and desolating myriads. It was just at this season that the first crops of the new settlers were in the full glory of their youthful green. The assailants could not be repulsed. The Mormons, after their fashion, prayed and fought, and fought and prayed, but to no purpose. The 'Black Philistines' mowed their way even with the ground, leaving it as if touched with an acid or burnt by fire.

"But an unlooked for ally came to the rescue. Vast armies of bright birds, before strangers to the valley, hastened across the lake from some unknown quarter, and gorged themselves upon the well fatted enemy. They were snow-white, with little heads and clear dark eyes, and little feet, and long wings, that arched in flight 'like an angel's.' At first the Mormons thought they were new enemies to plague them; but when they found them hostile only to the locusts, they were careful not to molest them in their friendly office, and, to this end, declared a heavy fine against all who should kill or annoy them with fire-arms. The gulls soon grew to be tame as the poultry, and the delighted little children learned to call them their pigeons. They disappeared every evening beyond the lake; but, returning with sunrise, continued their welcome visitings till the crickets were all [exhausted].

"This curious incident recurred the following year, with this variation, that in 1849, the gulls came earlier and saved the wheat crops from all harm whatever."

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. ?                            Cincinnati, Ohio, July 20?, 1850.                            No. ?


ARREST OF A PROPHET. -- Yesterday Wm. Smith, the Mormon Prophet (brother of Joseph,) was arraigned before Esq. Snellbaker at the instance of Isaac Sheen, who alleged that the Prophet was a dangerous man, and it was feared that complainant's life would be taken, ere long, by said Prophet! An anonymous letter, supposed to have been written by Smith, was presented by Sheen and read; the letter warned Sheen that he should "die with the cholera, or some other loathsome disease," and further stated that if said Sheen interfered again with the writer's family affairs, he, the writer, would shoot said Sheen and no mistake! The lawyer for complainant made a speech, after which the Prophet rose to reply but the weather being hot, the Court cut the matter short by informing Mr. Smith that there was no need of his saying a single word, as the complainant had not adduced evidence that could by any possibly justify binding over to keep the peace; so the prophet walked forth again free as air.

Note 1: The exact date and content of this report remain undetermined. The text is taken from a reprint which appeared in the Springfield Illinois Journal of July 24, 1850.

Note 2: By July of 1850 the personal relationship previously shared by elders William Smith and Isaac Sheen had obviously deteriorated beyond repair. Six months earlier these two noted Mormons had issued an ambitious political communication entitled Remonstrance of William Smith et al., of Covington, Kentucky Against the Admission of Deseret into the Union. In early May, Elder Sheen had withdrawn his support for that joint effort and began to openly oppose William in the public press.

Note 3: Early in 1850 a members of Lyman Wight's Texas Mormons showed up to attend William Smith's Conference in Covington, Kentucky and at that time Elder Sheen received a firm confirmation that both William Smith and Lyman Wight were practical polygamists. This revealed secret knowledge helped clarify the nature of some suspicious advances William had made among female members in the Covington-Cincinnati area -- evidently including a certain "Mrs. Caldwell" and the proffered seduction of Sheen's own wife. John K. Sheen (the couple's son) later related his father's reaction: "Through the visit and death of Otis Hobart it was learned that the 'devil' was in Texas and that William was not above suspicion. Father laid a plan to entrap him, and succeeded in getting a polygamous letter from William, who was then in Illinois. He immediately exposed 'the Elijah of the last dispensation,' withdrew his name from the petition against the 'State of Deseret' and pulled up the 'Stake of Zion'in Covington... William flourished the scalping knife and even 'little Johnnie' got a slash." John did not specify the details of William Smith's "scalping" counter-attack, but the above newspaper clipping shows that William had returned to the Cincinnati area by mid-July and was threatening Isaac Sheen, over interference "with the writer's family affairs" (perhaps hinting at William's various "spiritual wifery" activities). For more on "Mrs. Caldwell" see the Covington Daily Union of June 5, 1850.

Note 4: See Orson Hyde's Kanesville Frontier Guardian of June 26 for the Brighamite response to William's having "invaded" Sheen's "domestic circle" -- likely an oblique reference to the planned assault on Mrs. Sheen's feminine virtue. Kyle Walker has pointed out these additional Hyde remarks, from his April 25, 1850 letter, addressed to Brigham Young: "Our efforts have been feeble, when brought to bear against the deep-rooted prejudices which men, in high places, have imbibed against us. Their prejudices have been greatly strengthened by the lying villany of 'Bill Smith' who has been untiring in dogging Congress with remonstrances, petitions, and the most foul and bitter falsehoods against you at the Salt Lake. The reports which emigrants have sent back concerning your enmity to the Governmant, and the precious morsels concerning polygamy... have soured the minds of the General Government very much."


Vol. VI.                           Defiance, Ohio, Saturday, August 3, 1850.                           No. 49.

Salt  Lake  City.

We have been furnished, says the St. Louis Intelligencer, with leave to publish a letter from an intelligent gentleman now in Deseret to his family in St. Charles.... The writer dates his letter April, 1850. We extract only his description of the Mormon city.

"The Salt Lake City is situated three miles from the range of mountains which circles the valley on the east side, and about twenty-two miles from the great Lake.... The members of the Mormon persuasion are liberally encouraged to agricultural pursuits. They are allowed to improve as much [land] as they choose to have surveyed and enclosed in the "commons" near the city, and the pre-emption title they assume, is held indisputable. One man can, in this way, accumulate immense quantities of land, but the privilege of selling it is not extended to him. Either to reserve the right in the city... of themselves disposing of real estate, or to prevent other than Mormons from obtaining a foothold in the country, no Mormon can sell or bargain for a single foot of his land. I should add that, besides the very encouraging privileges of the commons, every citizen of the Salt [Lake] city is allowed one and a half acre of ground; having thus an opportunity of cultivating gardens, fine yards, &c.

"The city is divided into nineteen wards, each containing a half mile square. Every square has its Bishop, whose powers temporally correspond to our justice of the peace. The officers of the general city government are: a President, Marshall, Sheriff, &c., the first of whom is elected for life by [the] council of twelve, and the second semi-annually by the same body. The power of the President is unlimited -- his word in almost every instance is the law of the land. In the event of the perpetration of any crime, however, the council of twelve have a right to depose him. Since the murder of the famed Jo Smith, Mr. Brigham has ruled among the Latter Day Saints. He is much beliked by the people for honesty (so called) in office, no less for his social democratic deportment out. He need never apprehend a revolt among his people -- they are ever disposed to wink at his little errors, and to award him a full measure of praise for his virtues. I have known him pretty intimately since my arrival, and assure you, that if not a saint, he is at least an intelligent, energetic business man, and a very pleasant companionable gentleman...

"The Mormons are a gay people. given to music, dancing and women. They do not, so far as my observation goes, profess to keep the Sabbath holy, nor (despite that the apostles pretend to have secret interviews with their Maker,) do I perceive that religion has much influence over them in any circumstances. The followers of Christ they pretend to regard as heathens who stand the least chance of salvation. Indeed the Mormons regard or pretend to regard the creed of their sires which they themselves just forswore, as the most deceitful of all creeds -- they abominate it. The dislike they bear to Christianity is divided with [that] which they bear American Christians. The United States is seldom alluded to in other than an unfriendly, rancorous spirit, and Missouri and Illinois, you may rest assured come in for a round share of hate. In the councils of the people, this feeling is, from politic and prudent motives, in a great measure concealed. In society and in full business transactions, however, the allow it full play. I hear daily predictions of the most frightful calamities that are shortly to befall the United States. Its cup of wickedness, they say, is full, and the Lord will now visit it with deserts -- his vial of wrath will be opened upon it. It is firmly believed here that the cholera was only a forerunner of the greater evil which will follow, and I hear it ridiculously enough stated, that when the worst does come, 'Zion' -- the Salt Lake City -- will be the only one which can be looked to for security."

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. VI.                             Cleveland, Ohio, Monday, August 5, 1850.                             No. 106.


THE MORMON COLONY, BEAVER ISLAND. -- We have just conversed with a gentleman who has just returned from a visit to Beaver Island, at the head of Lake Michigan, upon which the Mormon Colony is located, headed by their prophet, Jas. Strang. They number about six hundred, and have a farm on the island, which is cultivated by them. They have also engaged to a limited extent in taking white fish and trout which constitutes their chief means of subsistence.

The Temple, 100 by 60 feet, is in progress at their settlement, one sixth of the labor of the colony being required upon it weekly. At present this labor is directed to the building of a Printing Office, the press and materials for a weekly paper being on the ground. Semi-occasionally the portion of the Temple which is finished is used as a Theatre! Mr. G. J. Adams, one of the leaders, acting as manager, and we are informed the "Lady of Lyons" has had a worse "Claude," and an inferior "Pauline" upon Boston boards. This room is also used as a ball room, where the faithful chase the giddy hours, and also a place of worship on Sundays.

Strang is at present deeply engaged in deciphering the plates found by him, as indicated by a vision, back of Kenosha, sometime since. They are of copper and are engraved with cabalistic characters, supposed to relate to the interests of the "church of the latter day," by his followers. He is described as a hard working, and industrious man, but most of those on the island are indolent and evasive to labor. -- Chicago Journal.

Notes: (forthcoming)


The Daily Sanduskian.

Vol. III.                          Sandusky, Ohio, Thursday, October 10, 1850.                          No. 145.

Correspondence  of  the  Advertiser.

City of the Great Salt Lake,     
July 13, 1850.     
Mr. Editor: Sir, having reached this point on my trip to California, I take the liberty of addressing you a few lines, which, if you please, you may publish. We arrived here the evening of thr 4th, and have remained here till this time for the purpose of recruiting ourselves and our horses. We made the journey from Council Bluffs in 49 days, the distance being about eleven hundred miles. The road most of the way is very fine; far better than I supposed any road could be without the application of labor. For more than a thousand miles the hand of man has never been raised to strike a blow, yet the road is better than can be found for the same distance in any part of the states.... I had supposed that the country from the Missouri to Fort Laramie resembled the prairies of the western states; and indeed this is the case for about 150 miles, except that there is a greater scarcity of timber. Thence onward, bordering the Platte, there is a strip of bottom land, generally from four to five miles in width, but sometimes disappearing entirely. Then commence sandy bluffs. How far they extend, I cannot say....

But I come now to speak more particularly of the place and people among whom we have found ourselves. I cannot describe my feelings as we emerged from the narrow defile or canyon of the mountain, and found ourselves in an open valley smiling in verdure, and blooming beneath the cultivating hand of man. We had travelled a thousand miles over desert, mountains and wilds. But here was a perfect oasis, with rustlibg wheat fields and green meadows, where folks lived, and the voice of women and prattle of children were heard. The Mormons are indeed a most peculiar people. They possess many traits which one cannot but admire. A more hospitable people I never saw. The emigrant is welcome to their houses, and if he is sick, out of money, or deserted by his partners, his wants are supplied and he is welcome to remain with them as long as he pleases. If any one wishes to work, he can earn $5 per day in the harvest field. It is not quite three years since the first emigrants arrived in the valley, themselves and their cattle worn out, scantily supplied with provisions and the winter approaching. But they went to work, and they have supplied themselves abundantly with the necessaries of life, and furnished thousands of strangers with food, teams and health to resume their journey with safety and comfort. The valley contains about 12,000 souls, and 5,000 more are expected this summer; besides this there are several settlements north and south of this, making in all about 20,000. They live generally in small houses or huts of unburnt bricks. Each man can occupy a small portion of land within the limits of the city, and as much as they please to till without. Their government resembles somewhat, that of the ancient Jews; and, in fact, they seem to imitate as much as possible in every respect that people. In regard to their religion, I have not learned everything. But they claim to possess in their priesthood the power and spirit of prophecy and working miracles. Having lain dormant since the death of the apostles, it was revived in the person of Joe Smith, who was ordained a priest forever, after the order of Melchisedek. Polygamy is indulged in freely, and some other practices which Christians generally consider contrary to the spirit of the New Testament. Brigham Young, the high priest of the church and president of the state, has at present 27 wives, and all others in proportion to their rank. -- What will be the result of Mormonism, it is difficult to predict. They certainly are increasing very fast, and are destined at some day, to wield no mean influence in the nation.

I do not believe they can ever be a state by themselves, and belong to the Union. Their customs, laws, religion and inclinations are all opposed to it. What they ardently wish, and at some time expect, is a separate dominion where they can maintain a monarchy, or rather a pretended theocracy to suit themselves, for the revelations which their priests are continually receiving pertain not only to religious faith and practice, but to their temporal affairs and their whole policy and conduct. But they say that Mormonism is destined to overspread the whole earth, and not till then will be the Millennium of the world.
           Very respectfully yours,
                        L. C. TAYLOR.

Note: See also the Huron Reflector of Oct. 22, 1850.


Vol. XXI.                               Norwalk, Ohio, October 22, 1850.                               No. 41.

Interesting Sketches of the Mormon Settlements.

BEAVER ISLANDS. -- The Beaver Islands, situated at the foot of Lake Michigan, is the present location of the "Peace party" Mormons, (or, as they love to call themselves, Latter Day Saints) under the administration of James J. Strong [sic -Strang?], whom they claim to be "Joseph Smith's lawful successor in the prophetical office.

Mormonism, whether true or false, has gone forward in gigantic strides, being aided by the help of persecuting priests and biogoted people who will always aid in building up any delusion which the cranium of man can invent.

It has brought into its fold many thousand thinking people from various sects of the day, who seem from their appearance and energy, to be people of understanding and enterprise, who really believe their religion to be true, however unpopular, and are showing by their works the faith which they profess to have. Of all the gathering places the Mormons have had, Beaver Island is the best. It possesses the best natural harbor on the lakes, where all kinds of vessels here lie in perfect safety during the severest storms. It is very comodious and beautiful. There are some five or six hundred of the church already gathered there, having set good stores and one nice steam saw-mill on the Island. The interior of the Beaver is good farming country, well timbered with pine, hemlock, mountain ash, beech, birch, spruce and maple, and a great variety of other kinds of woodland. There are three of the most beautiful crystal lakes ever beheld by man. They are building a Tabernacle one hundred by sixty-two feet, in which they expect to receive their pentacostal endowments, which their prophet promises them, that God will give them when it is finished. The people seem to be very industrious, active and enterprising.

Their prophet, Strong, is a masterpiece of intellectuality; a thorough going man of good information. He was once the postmaster of Ellicottville, and editor of the Randolph Herald, of this State [copied from a NY paper] -- was a regular lawyer of considerable eminence before his appointment to be the Mormon prophet. Since which time he has had nothing to do with either law or politics. -- He devotes his whole time for the good of the people who he is president over. He and his people seem to be very much devoted to their cause, and say they shall make Beaver Island a second "Eden' for beauty and privileges. His people, each, are presented with from 40 to 160 acres of land, as an everlasting inheritance to them and their children for ever.

The Mormons are regular free soilers, but not politically so, for they say they have never been protected in their rights in Missouri, or Illinois as citizens, and therefore they will have nothing to do with politics, but "will be subject to the laws that be," and be governed by them, but will not help make them, and thus bring upon them another persecution.

Beaver Islands are blest with the most extensive inland fishery there is in the United States. White fish and Mackinaw trout are taken in abundance. The Mormons own two good sail vessels, and can do a good business in the lumber trade. -- All kinds of work is carried on upon the Beaver which is done elsewhere on the western lake ports. Propellers and sailors are continually going and coming into their port. The first class of large steamers do not stop there regularly; yet a pier will soon be built at the head of the Island, where they will all call regularly. Garden Island, six miles square, is one of the richest and most beautiful islands upon the earth. The Big Beaver is six by fourteen miles in extent. There are several more beautiful and well timbered islands which surround the Big Beaver; each about six miles square. The people have sent to Congress a petition for a grant of these Islands, and it is hoped that the government will give it to them that they may live by themselves and enjoy their fanaticism and delusion, if it is such, without molestation from any one.

Mr. L. C. Taylor, writing to the New York Advertiser, at the city of Salt Lake, on his overland route to California, gives the following account of the Mormon valley:

"I cannot describe my feelings as we emerged from the narrow defile of canyon of the mountain, and found ourselves in an open valley, smiling in verdure, and blooming beneath the cultivating hand of man. We had traveled a thousand miles over deserts. mountains and wilds. But here was a perfect oasis, with rustling wheat fields and green meadows, where folks lived, and the voices of women and prattle of children were heard. The Mormons are indeed a most peculiar people. They possess many traits which one cannot but admire. A more hospitable people I never saw. The emigrant is welcome to their houses, and if he is sick. out of money, or deserted by his partners, his wants are supplied and he is welcome to remain with them as long as he pleases. If any one wishes to work, he can earn $5 per day in the harvest field. It is not quite three years since the first emigrants arrived in the valley, themselves and their cattle worn out, scantily supplied with provisions and the winter approaching. But they went to work, and they have supplied themselves abundantly with the necessaries of life, and furnished thousands of strangers with food, teams and health to resume their journey with safety and comfort. The valley contains about 12,000 souls, and 5,000 more are expected this summer; besides this there are several settlements north and south of this, making in all about 20,000. They live generally in small houses or huts of unburnt bricks. Each man can occupy a small portion of land within the limits of the city and as much as they please to till without. Their government resembles somewhat, that of the ancient Jews; and, in fact, they seem to imitate as much as possible in every respect that people. In regard to their religion, I have not learned everything. But they claim to possess in their priesthood the power and spirit of prophecy and working miracles. Having lain dormant since the death of the apostles. it was [restored] in the person of Joe Smith, who was ordained a priest forever, after the order of Melchisedek. Polygamy is indulged in freely, and some other practices which Christians generally consider contrary to the spirit of the New Testament. Brigham, the high priest of the church and president of the state, has at present 27 wives, and all others in proportion to their rank. What will be the result of Mormonism, it is difficult to predict. They certainly are increasing very fast, and are destined at some day, to wield no mean influence in the nation.

I do not believe they can ever be a state by themselves, and belong to the Union. Their customs, laws, religion and inclinations are all opposed to it. What they ardently wish, and at some time expect, is a separate dominion where they can maintain a monarchy, or rather a pretended theocracy to suit themselves, for the revelations which their priests are continually receiving, pertain not only to religious faith and practice, but to their temporal affairs and their whole policy and conduct. But they say that Mormonism is destined to overspread the whole earth, and not till then will be the Millennium of the world.

THE GREAT SALT LAKE CITY AND VALLEY. -- In three years Utah has sprung up from a wilderness... (under construction)

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. VI.                             Cleveland, Ohio, Monday, November 4, 1850.                             No. 185.

Mormonism  at  the  Salt  Lake.

The Doctrine of Spiritual Wives -- The City of the Salt Lake --
Beautifully laid out -- Irrigation of its Soil -- Splendid wheat --
The population of the Valley -- Abundance of gold currency --
Priests' share of the crops -- The title to the land -- The flocks
worthy of the children of Israel in the land of Goshen.


A California emigrant, who writes in the St. Louis Intelligencer, in the course of his overland journey, sojourns some days among the Mormons of the Salt Lake. Though evidently imbued with prejudices, he is a keen observer, and writes readily and agreeably of the truly wonderful improvements which the Mormons have built upon their Isle -- if we may so speak of their isolation -- in the Desert. For indomitable industry, the "Latter-Day Saints" will hold a marked place in the world's history. When they were driven from Illinois, starvation seemed inevitable, but three years have elapsed, and they are already as prosperous a community as there is in the whole Union. Such are the fruits of unwearied industry:

"Since I have known Mormonism, its progress has been from bad to worse, and now, as a religious sect, their standard of morals is sunk below the 'Five Points' in the city of New York, though more order and regularity is certainly found in Mormondom than about the 'Points.' In the States, the spiritual wife doctrine was denied by many of the sect, though admitted by some. -- Now, polygamy is practiced and openly avowed to be by divine command; even ladies, who have been raised in the States in the first circles, and received moral and religious educations, said to me they considered it all right and in accordance with God's will. Bishop Kimball is said to have between thirty and forty wives. Others have various numbers -- some more, some less; a man can have as many as he can support. Their preaching is now nothing but strong and bitter denunciations against other people, more particularly the people and government of the United States. No moral principles are urged, explained or inculcated from their stands; they say themselves that they preach no longer, they only exchange thoughts and ideas with one another -- On the 4th of July, one of the most treasonable speeches (if it could be so called) was made in their public building, that we ever listened to. -- They are greatly incensed against the United States -- 1st, because Congress would not repay them for the damage done their property in Missouri and Illinois, by the mobs which drove them out of those States; 2d, because Deseret has not been given a Territorial or State government; and 3d, probably because no more notice is taken of them now, by the press of the country, than though they were one of the far-off Indian tribes.

The City of the Great Salt Lake is beautifully laid out within a short distance of the western slope of the mountain forming the eastern end of the valley. It contains eleven or twelve thousand inhabitants, who are mostly engaged in agriculture, though a portion of their time is devoted to mechanical pursuits when understood. The streets of the city intersect each other at right angles, and each block is half a mile square, with an alley from East to West and Norm and South. Each block is called a ward, and has a bishop to preside over its government, whose duties are to act as magistrates, tax collectors and preachers, as well as street commissioners. The city and all the farming lands are irrigated by streams of beautiful water, which flow from the adjacent mountains. These streams have been with great labor and perseverence led in every direction. In the city they flow on each side of the different streets, and their waters are led upon the inhabitant's gardens at regular periods, so likewise upon the extensive fields of grain lying to the South of the city. There is a field thirty miles long by six and ten wide, a portion of which is cultivated by any who desire. This field was moving with wheat, barely and oats, nearly ready for the sickle when we were at the lake, and a finer field of wheat never grew in any country; the berry was large, full and plump, and of a superior whiteness. We were convinced that no country in the world could produce better crops of wheat than this valley, or arger amount to the acre. The system of irrigation prevents anything like rust or smut striking the crop, to blast the expectation of the farmer. The productiveness of the soil will always secure him an abundant crop.

Mormon Population. -- Within the valley, and including three other settlements of this people in the vicinity, there cannot be far from 30,000 inhabitants. Forty miles south they have a village, and another 110 miles farther South, among the Utah Indians -- I suppose -- where fine forests of all kinds of timber abound, while little or none for mechanical purpose, excepting pine, grows in the vicinity of the valley. The character of this people has changed but little since their exodus from the States. The leaders and all appear to be more "free and easy" and the great body as perseveringly industrious and obedient to the higher powers as ever. Money is very plenty among them -- principally gold much of which came from the California mines. The religious character of the whole body has degenerated into mere amusement frivolity, &c., not even the semblance of true piety is kept up.

In the vicinity of the city is a warm spring which has been brought into the city, and public baths erected. The water is highly medicinal. Each citizen has a building lot appropriated to his use, but is not the absolute owner, as he cannot dispose of it to a Gentile without the consent of the church; neither can a Mormon move away or take a journey without the consentof the church. Each member is allowed to take up and cultivate as much land as he pleases, but he can only sell such improvements as he may make upon the land. One-tenth of the produce of the land, or the accumulation of each individual, as well as one-tenth of his time, belongs to the church, and is rigorously exacted. The houses are mostly one story high, though some of them are neat little cottages. They have nearly completed a spacious Court House two stories high, 40 feet square. The first story is built of freestone and the second of sunburnt brick; houses built of these brick are very warm in winter and cool in summer, and appear well ndapted to the climate. They are about to erect a temple and other public buildings. Eber Kimball's house is a large two story stone building, some 50 feet by 25 ft., yet it is not large enough to contain one half of his numerous wives. The prosperity of this people is truly astonishing. They have flocks and herds and most of the good things of earth in abundance. We saw about 3,000 of the finest, fattest cattle on an island in the Salt Lake, that we ever put eye upon. In the morning you may see lads driving hundreds of cows from the bounds of the city to the herded within two or three miles and then driven back at night. The regulations of the valley in regard to stock are, that it shall be fenced while the gardens and fields are left with a slight protection in the way of a fence. Brigham Young is the Alpha and Omega of the sect; his word is law. He is emphatically the thinking, breathing organ of this whole people; and yet he is an ordinary minded man, without the "hard horse" sense of Joe Smith or many of those who surrounded him; his quiet, good-natured disposition -- in short, his amiableness of character has, and will keep him, the leader of the Latter Day Saints.

This valley is capable of sustaining a population of 150,000, it is from 30 to 50 miles wide, and from 160 to 180 miles long; nearly the whole valley is fit for cultivation if irrigation be resorted to. Hemmed in on all sides by mountains, upon whose tops lies perpetual snow, one would suppose that the climate is much colder than it really is in both summer and winter. Prices range high in the valley; coffee 60 cents per lb; sugar do; beans 50 cts. per pint; flour 50 cts. per pound; beef 12 1/2 cts; butter 37 1/2; milk 25 c per quart; bacon 50 cents per pound.

Note: The full letter in the St. Louis newspaper also says that the Mormons have formed a treaty "offensive and defensive" with the Utah Indians; and further, that many of these Indians have been baptised in the Mormon faith.


The Daily Sanduskian.

Vol. III.                          Sandusky, Ohio, Wednesday, December 18, 1850.                          No. 203.

From the Detroit Advertiser.


Beaver Island, which is the largest of a collection or group of that same name, lies in Lake Michigan, about twenty-five miles above the Straits of Mackinac. It contains about twenty-eight thousand acres of land, (a large portion of which is still in the hands of Government,) and forms one organized township. -- There is, upon this island, a population of about five hundred, the larger proportion of which are Mormons. Those not professing this belief, are styled Gentiles.

A bitter fight has sprung up between the Mormons and Gentiles, and the same state of hostility that marked the course of this sect in Illinois and Missouri, toward other sects, and vice versa, exist at this place.

It is doubtless true that the Mormons, as a sect, have suffered wrongs and persecution at the hands of individuals and whole communities, through the influence to some extent, of prejudice, and, to a certain degree, through their own misconduct. This persecution has not been blessed with benign results upon the temper and character of the sect generally; but has resulted in making its leaders, and some of its members, vindictive, tyrannical and dishonest.

The leaders of the Mormon colony on Beaver Island, are unprincipled and worthless men, and the chief, or "King," as he is styled -- a man by the name of Strang -- is an open profligate and blackguard.

Early in the last summer, a rumor was current through the Island, that the Indians, half-breeds, fishermen, and other inhabitants from the surrounding Islands were to make a descent upon the Mormons, and drive them off. The Mormons, consequently, organized themselves, fortified their "Tabernacle," or church, planted ordnance in front of it, and blazed away a bold defiance at the world in general. No attack took place; but the rumour was sufficient to furnish Strang with an available argument in favour of a "strong Government," which argument he immediately applied, and procured himself to be proclaimed "King" for his natural life, and G. J. Adams, (an ex-theatrical performer,) viceroy, in case of his death, until the succession should be filled. The sequel has shown that --

"Upon his head, they placed a fruitless crown, And put a barren sceptre in his grasp;"

for his short reign has been marked with turmoil and trouble. His Viceroy, Adams, has left him in disgust, and, taking with him a large number of subjects, has retired to the Island of Mackinac, where he is engaged in playing sham "Kings" and "Viceroys," in the loft over J. P. King's store, to a very select audience. Some of those who followed Adams to Mackinac, have since returned to Beaver Island, and found their houses, furniture, and goods, in the hands of others, who professed to hold by virtue of an "order of confiscation" issued by King Strang, who, moreover, informed them that "the island was not large enough to hold them." These persons have again left, as all faithful subjects were forbid from harbouring them. Mrs. Adams the wife of the Viceroy, remains upon the island; and it is supposed that it was in consequence of certain infamous propositions made toward her by Strang, that his Majesty was arrested, and thrown into jail at Mackinac, on a charge of bigamy; from whence he was liberated, in order to enable him to return to his "Kingdom," and exercise "the glorious privileges of a freeman," by making his subjects vote the Loco Foco ticket, under pain of death, and without distinction of age, sex, or race.

The entire township organization of the island is in the hands of the Mormons, though Mr. Bowers, the Township Clerk, who refused to sign the election returns, in consequence of the gross frauds, is little more than one in name.

The sect are forbidden by "King Strang" from buying Government land. They are, however, encouraged to pillage Government timber, which they do with great industry. -- When this laudable enterprise is accomplished, they will probably pull up stakes and go elsewhere, as they can make nothing there by farming.

Note: See also the Detroit Tribune of Dec. 11, 1850.



Vol. VIII.                               Conneaut, Ohio,  January 30, 1851.                              No. 1.


"THE PROMISED LAND." -- The Frontier Guardian of the 25th ult. just came to hand, states that Bishop Holiday, residing in Utah Territory, on South Cottonwood Creek, about ten miles south of the Great Salt Lake City, raised, from one bushel sowing, one hundred and eighty bushels of the choicest and cleanest wheat, measured up and it weighed plump sixty pounds to the bushel....

[Elder Orson Hyde:]... We feel it to be our duty to define our position in relation to the subject of slavery. There are several in the Valley of the Salt Lake from the Southern States, who have their Slaves with them. There is no law in Utah to authorize slavery, neither any to prohibit it. If the slave feels disposed to leave his master, no power exists there, either legal or moral that will prevent him. But if the slave chooses to remain with his master, none are allowed to interfere between the master and the slave. All the slaves that are there now appear to be perfectly contented and satisfied. When a man in the Southern States embraces our faith, and is the owner of slaves, the church says to him, if your slaves wish to remain with you, and to go with you, put them not away, but if they choose to leave you, or are not satisfied to remain with you, it is for you to sell them, or let them go free, as your own conscience may direct you. The church on this point assumes not the responsibility to direct. The laws of the land recognize slavery: we do not wish to oppose the laws of the country. If there is a sin in selling a slave, let the individual who sells him bear the sin, and not the church. Wisdom and prudence dictate to us this position, and we trust that our position will be henceforth understood. -- Fron. Guardian.

Note: See the LDS Millennial Star of February 15, 1851, for a more complete version of the second item's text.


Vol. VI.                           Cleveland, Ohio, Tuesday, February 4, 1851.                           No. 257.

Slavery  Among  the  Mormons.

We feel it to be our duty to define our position in relation to the subject of Slavery. There are several men in the Valley of the Salt Lake from the Southern States, who have their slaves with them. There is no law in Utah to authorize slavery, neither any to prohibit it. If the slave is disposed to leave his master, no power exists there, either legal or moral, that will prevent him. But if the slave choose to remain with his master, none are allowed to interfere between the master and the slave. All the slaves that are there appear to be perfectly contented and satisfied. When a man in the Southern States embraces our faith, and is the owner of slaves, the church says to him, if your slaves wish to remain with you, and to go with you, put them not away; but if they choose to leave you, or are not satisfied to remain with you, it is for you to sell them or let them go free, as your own conscience may direct you. The church on this point assumes not the responsibility to direct. The laws of the land recognize slavery; we do not wish to oppose the laws of the country. If there is sin in selling a slave, let the individual who sells him bear that sin, and not the church. Wisdom and prudence dictate to us this position, and we trust that our position will henceforth be understood. -- Frontier Guardian.

Note 1: Other transcripts of the Guardian article add the following: "Our counsel to all our ministers in the North and in the South is, to avoid contention upon this subject, and to oppose no institution which the laws of the country authorize; but labour to bring men into the Church and kingdom of God, and then teach them to do right, and honor their God and his creatures."

Note 2: It appears that slaves who "willingly" accompanied their masters to Utah during this period were viewed as property once they arrived there, and not as persons.



Vol. VIII.                               Conneaut, Ohio,  March 27, 1851.                              No. 9

Mr. Lake  at Home.

Our friend and townsman Zaphna Lake, Esq., reached home on Thursday morning, having been about fourteen months, sojourning in California. We are under many obligations to him for the series of letters published in the Reporter, and much other information respecting California... We had anticipated an article from his pen of the country and the prospects of the "boys" from our vicinity; but his calls have been numerous, and a host of friends congratulating on his return, that opportunity has not been afforded him for that purpose...

Notes: Zaphna Lake was the son of Conneaut "Spalding witness," Henry Lake. The younger Lake's western wanderings may have taken him through Great Salt Lake City, but so far no account of his experiences in that place has been discovered.



Vol. VIII.                               Conneaut, Ohio,  April 3, 1851.                              No. 10.

Correspondence from Mr. Lake.

Conneaut, March 31, 1851.    
Friend Allen: Anticipating what your readers may wish to know of California, I hasten to give you... such information as may be useful to such as wish to leave for that country this spring.

First, all who are comfortably off at home had better stay "well off." Those who have a desire beyond their control to try their luck in the "El Dorado," get ready and start, the sooner the better; this the best season of the year to leave for California. From New York it will take thirty-five days, by steamer; $250 will be sufficient to pay for steerage and incidental expenses from New York to California...

From a year's residence in California, I cannot think of an article of trade I would deem an object to ship out. The market is very fluctuating, and at present well supplied with lumber, goods and provisions; and where one year ago a man could not find a place to shelter his head, there are now plenty of comfortable houses and good accomodations...
Z. LAKE    

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. ?                           Sandusky, Ohio, Friday, April 21, 1851.                           No. ?


We have reveived letters from Beaver Island -- the kingdom of Strang the first -- which state that a state of disturbance has continued there during the entire winter. Strang, at the commencement of cold weather, and after the season of navigation was over, drew more tightly the reins of government, well knowing that whatever might occur, there was no probability of interference from abroad. A whipping post was erected, and is chiefly devoted to the punishment of those who spoke lightly of the king, or cast aspersions upon his "divine right" to reign. Several persons were cruelly whipped with fifty lashes upon the bare back, with beach and hickory rods. Terror was then spread among those remaining upon the Island, and implicit obedience enforced. A man by the name of Moore, a Mormon, becoming disaffected, left the Island, whereupon his property real and personal, was declared confiscated, and was given to another by virtue of a royal edict. During the winter, Moore returned upon the ice, and attempted to regain possession of his house and goods, but was compelled to flee for his life. He was pursued by Strang, but was rescued and defended by a small tribe of Indians with whom he remained and passed the winter. Upon the opening of navigation, Moore obtained process at Mackinaw against Strang, and taking the Sheriff, with a poste of fifty well armed Indian warriors, went to the Beaver to make arrests. Strang, however, spied out their approach, and suspecting their object, and with the royal examples of Charles II and Louis Phillippe before his eye, fled amain, and took refuge on a small island, some ten miles distant. From this place be was driven by the Sheriff and his aboriginal forces, who at our latest advices, (April 11th,) were still in full pursuit, having captured a large yawl, several stands of arms, and a quantity of military stores beloning to his majesty.  Detroit Advertiser.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. VIII.                               Conneaut, Ohio,  April 24, 1851.                              No. 13.


THE MORMONS AT BEAVER ISLAND. -- We have before us the Northern Islander, a weekly newspaper, hailing from "St. James, Beaver Island, Lake Michigan." It is conducted by Cooper & Chidester, the former a graduate of the Sentinel office. It is devoted to the peculiar tenets of the Mormonites, and very respectably conducted. The editors say they have been without a mail for three months; and delayed the number for March 21st for intelligence from "foreign parts," without being gratified. -- Last fall reports were circulated of rebellion on the Island, and not a very flattering state of society existing, which is dispelled by the announcement of the Islander, that peace and good order is established there. Bower, the only colored man on the island, held the office of township clerk; and on a recent election held, refused to sign the returns, which the Islander terms "characteristic ingratitude of his race." It would [appear that] speaking disrespectfully of the Mormons is no longer to be tolerated. "A practice has been adopted here," says that paper, "of flogging every one who spoke reproachfully of them;" and recommends its practice on a larger scale. They are real advocates of the "Hyer" law -- while one of the faithful pronounces the following curse upon the Nation:

Let us never pray for the peace of this nation, unless she by her acts washes herself of the blood of saints; and until she does so, may God "come out of his hiding place, and vex the nation," as he hath said. May he cut off her unjust rulers -- block up the wheels of government -- retard legislation by divisions in Congress -- and as he has already commenced, send pestillence, fire and desolation among her cities, until they are as clean of men as the cities of Zion, Kirtland, Independence, Far West, Diahman, Dewitt and Nauvoo are of saints.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. VII.                             Cleveland, Ohio, Friday, April 25, 1851.                             No. 22.


We have just received a copy of the "Northern Islander," a weekly paper, published at St. James, Beaver Island, Lake Michigan. It is quite a spruce little sheet, and offers unquestionable proofs of the enterprise and prosperity of the Mormon settlement. Its principal object is, of course, to disseminate the peculiar views of the sect, and this it does -- if not with ability and perspicuity -- at least with a candor and zeal that might well be imitated by many who profess to be disciples of a better faith. Among other interesting matters contained in this number, we find a tolerably well written appeal, in three columns, "To the Saints scattered abroad, greeting," in which are set forth the great mission of the "Prophet," the final union of different creeds in the common bonds of Mormonism, and the manifold advantages which are offered to proselytes by the beauty and fertility of the Island. Then comes a poem in which the same ideas are again enforced. We give the first two verses.

For the Islander
O come all the Saints, without longer delay;
Come up to the Big Beaver, for this is the way
To build again Zion, the saints blest abode,
And anchor your souls in the kingdom of God.

The ensign is lifted, the banner unfurled,
Unto ev'ry nation throughout the whole world.
For the kingdom's established, as Daniel did say,
And the Saints will possess it throughout endless day.
The paper also contains an exposition of the merits of tithing, and a new and elaborate version of the ten commandments, which, from their length and complex nature, would "put to his stumps" the very best Sunday School scholar in the country.

The Saints, with all their spirituality, are yet nothing but flesh and blood; they relish a joke -- perhaps a bottle -- as well as the best (or worst) of us, and indeed in all the good things of the present life, they show a cultivation of taste for which the world has not given them credit. We need only append the following advertisement:


Ladies. -- I am in want of a good, kind and affectionate companion. One that has sagicity enough to learn to play a shrewd game of checkers or cards. Who knows enough to wait on herself, and too much to wait on me. One that will avoid above all things in God's world, speaking often to other men; for although maturely good natured, I am liable to be thrown into a perfect tempest of rage, by such unbecoming and outrageous conduct. I shall however allow her the privilege of occasionally conversing with such ones as I may name, but she must be very careful to tell me (if not present) every word that is said by both parties, else it will bring down my displeasure. To such a wife I shoul be, To her virtues a little blind, To her faults very unkind.

For further particulars of my qualifications inquire of my guardian.                              OLD MILLS.
Beaver Island, Feb. 4th, 1851.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. VII.                             Cleveland, Ohio, Saturday, April 26, 1851.                             No. 23.

The  Kingdom  of  Beaver  Island.

We have received letters frpm Beaver Island -- the kingdom of Strang the First -- which state that a state of disturbance has continued there during the entire winter. Strang, at the commencement of cold weather, and after the season of navigation was over, drew more tightly the reins of government, well knowing that whatever might occur, there was no probability of interference from abroad. A whipping post was erected, and chiefly devoted to the punishment of those who spoke lightly of the king, or cast aspersions upon his "divine right" to reign. Several persons were cruelly whipped with fifty lashes upon the bare back, with beech and hickory rods. Terror was then spread among those remaining upon the island and obedience strictly enforced. A man by the name of Moore, a Mormon, becoming disaffected, left the island, whereupon his property real and personal, was declared confiscated, and was given to another by royal edict.

During the winter, Moore returned upon the ice, and attempted to regain possession of his house and goods, but was compelled to flee for his life. He was pursued by Strang, but was rescued and [defended] by a small tribe of Indians, with whom he remained and passed the winter. Upon the opening of navigation, Moore obtained process at Mackinaw against Strang, and taking the Sheriff, with a possee of fifty well armed Indian warriors, went to Beaver to make arrests; Strang, however spied out their approach, and suspecting their object, and with the royal example of Charles II and Louis Philippe before his eyes, fled amain, and took refuge on a small island, some ten miles distant. From this place he was driven by the Sheriff and his aboriginal forces, who, at our latest advices, April 11, were still in full pursuit, having captured a large yawl, several stands of arms, and a quantity of military stores belonging to his Majesty. -- Detroit Adv.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. ?                             Cleveland, Ohio, May 2, 1851.                             No. ?

The Mormon Colony on Beaver Island.


We have a community of Robinson Crusoes much nearer us than most people think for. Two days' sail lands the adventurer on Beaver Island, in Lake Michigan, as completely cut off from the world during nearly half the year, as was Crusoe. There he will find a branch of the Mormon church, under the prophet Strang, who claims to be the true successor of the murdered Joseph Smith. Jesse has gathered quite a community in that isolated spot, and, judging from the tone of his organ, the Northern Islander, he intends his people shall enter upon and occupy the adjacent islands of the inland sea, on the principle that "might makes right." Beaver Island and the group are described as fertile and desireable, well adapted to the wood and lumber trade, and agricultural purposes, and in the midst of the best fisheries of the lake. The Northern Islander states that 15,000 barrels of fish were shipped from them the past season. Saint James is the name of the Mormon town, and a large emigration to it is looked for this season. Warren Post invites the "gathering" in Mormon poetry. The first verse reads: --

O come, all ye saints, without longer delay;
Come up to the Big Beaver, for this is the way
To build again Zion, the saints blest abode,
And anchor your souls in the kingdom of God.
The Northern Islander also exhorts to the "gathering":--


Come up to the islands and receive a perpetual inheritance for yourselves and your posterity. There is rich and beautiful wild land here, which will not float away, and you can have an abundance without money and without price. Land speculating is abolished here, by giving each man enough for his own use, without price, and treating all sales as frauds upon heirs, and therefore [---ities]. There is land enough in the world for all the people, and God made it; who shall deny each of his creatures a share? It is not done here."

From the close of navigation, last fall, to the first of April, no mail had been received at Beaver Island. The Islander, however, claims that the "Saints" had a good time of it in visiting, feasting, and dancing. This season a sailing packet is to run every week to Mackinao, and a large vessel is to make regular trips up and down the lakes for the transportation of lumber, &c. The Detroit Advertiser has letters of late date, which show and unsettled state of affairs in Strang's dominions. As the winter wore on, the idle fishermen became troublesome to Strang, and he had a whipping post erected for the punishment of those who spoke reproachfully of the Saints and the Prophet, or questioned his right to rule. The letters state that several persons were cruelly whipped with fifty lashes upon the bare back with beach and hickory rods. Terror was then spread among those remaining upon the island, and implicit obedience enforced. A man by the name of Moore, a Mormon, becoming disaffected, left the island, whereupon his property, real and personal, was declared confiscated, and was given to another, by virtue of a royal edict. During the winter, Moore returned upon the ice, and attempted to regain possession of his house and goods, but was compelled to flee for his life. He was pursued by Strang, but was rescued and defended by a small party of Indians, with whom he remained and passed the winter. Upon the opening of navigation, Moore obtained process at Mackinac against Strang, and taking the sheriff, with a posse of fifty well armed Indian warriors, went to Beaver to make arrests. Strang, however, spied out their approach, and suspecting their object, and with the royal examples of Charles II and Louis Philippe before his eyes, fled amain, and took refuge on a small island some ten miles distant. From this place he was driven by the sheriff and his aboriginal forces, who, at our latest advices, (April 11,) were still in full pursuit, having captured a large yawl, several stands of arms, and a quantity of military stores belonging to his Majesty.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. VIII.                               Conneaut, Ohio,  June 5, 1851.                              No. 19.


THE MORMON ARRESTS. -- The Setroit Free Press declares that the reported arrests of James J. Strang, and all other Mormon leaders was no arrest at all. They all went voluntarily on board the U. S. Steamer, and were only taken into the custody of the Marshal at their own request. They expressed themselves not only willing, but anxious for an investigation by the proper authorities -- and have asserted from the beginning that no violation of the laws has taken place on their part, or on the part of the Mormons on Beaver Island. They are in Detroit voluntarily and intend to remain there until the authorities are satisfied of their innocence....

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. VII.                             Cleveland, Ohio, Wednesday, June 11, 1851.                             No. 62.

Salt  Lake  Valley.

Late news from this section, the stronghold of the Mormons, is not very important. An Epistle of the Saints has been issued, which rejoices over the extension of Mormonism all over the Earth -- and from its unusual progress draws a portent of Christ's speedy coming, as well as from quarrels among Christian sects, cholera, whirlwinds, &c., &c.

The winter has been quite mild with but little snow, and several grain and lumber mills have been built. A Council House, a warm spring bath house and pottery, and wooden ware manufactory, are in course of erection. A colony of Mormons has been formed at Iron co., two hundred and fifty miles south of Salt Lake City, and at last advices it was prospering famously.

About three hundred California emigrants wintered with the Saints, and resumed their journey in the Spring.

Another Mormon settlement is about to be made near San Diego, in California, and one hundred and fifty wagons loaded with 'humans' and furniture, have left Salt Lake City for that place.

The twelve Apostles are now all abroad except two. They are actively engaged in propagating the faith in Iowa, Sandwich Islands, France, Italy, Switzerland and Germany; and in each of these countries they preach, translate and publish, with a zeal unparalleled in the history of religious warfare.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. VIII.                               Conneaut, Ohio,  June 12, 1851.                              No. 20.

Interesting News from Utah.

The Territory of Utah has become the half-way house to the Pacific, and the Deseret News of April 8th, gives a flattering picture of the progress of events in the Salt Lake Valley. The Mormons are making great preparations to receive their brethren from abroad, and are establishing manufactures of the main articles necessary for comfort in this isolated country. The winter had been mild, and several grain and lumber mills had been erected...

The Quorum of "Seventies" had agreed to erect an extensive rotunda in Great Salt Lake City, to be called the "Seventies Hall of Science," and Gov. Young, their President, was appointed trustee and Superintendent of the work. Shares are fixed at $25.

At a special session of the Great Salt Lake County Court, on the 3d January, some few transient men were convicted of stealing, were sentenced to hard labor for various terms, afterwards pardoned, and permitted to go on their way to California. About three hundred emigrants who wintered with them, left for the gold mines this spring...

The Outrage at Beaver Island.

A deplorable state of things exists at Beaver Island, the home of the Mormon leader Strang, and his followers. Serious difficulties exist between the Mormons and other inhabitants of the Island, and depredations upon property and persons is enlarged upon both sides. Strang has established a code of Mormon laws for the government of his people, and his regulations are obnoxious to the "Gentiles," as he styles them, on the Island who do not acknowledge his authority. The Mormons too are charged with various crimes, and Strang himself is the subject of several indictments. During the past winter the dwelling houses of two men named Bennett were burned, and the Mormons were charged with burning them. They were residents of the Island before Strang took possession, and never were Mormons. The Bennetts were owners of property and men of respectability, and it is said that Strang had avowed a determination to drive them from the Island, dead or alive. The conditions of immunity were that they should become Mormons, and be governed by the laws of the sect. This the Bennetts would not do, and they were persecuted by Strang and his followers at times by much litigation, and at other times upon their rights and property without color of law, until finally one of the Bennettes has been killed outright and the other severely wounded. The account as given by the Detroit Advertiser, on the authority of P. M. McKinley, Deputy U. States Marshal, is as follows:

"The Mormons assembled together to the number of 50 or more, and proceeded to the dwelling house of Thomas Bennett, armed with rifles, pistols, knives, &c., and bearing as they said, a Mormon Precept, authorizing them to seize his person and take his property. Upon their approach Bennett closed his doors upon them, telling them not to enter, upon which they fired some 40 shots into the house, the effect of which was to drive T. Bennett forth to seek safety in flight; but when he had gained a few rods, he fell dead, pierced by rifle balls, and forty buck-shot.

They next pursued the other Bennett, who fled instinctively; but after going a few rods, remembered the condition of his poor wife, (who was alone in the house,) and returned to receive their shot just as he crossed the threshold. His hand was cut in two by the shot, and the wound may not be mortal. The fiends then took the dead body of Thomas Bennett, and dragging it by the hair of the head to the boat, threw it in, and compelled Samuel Bennett, the wounded man to follow and sit down by it; they then drove the distracted woman after them into the boat, and took them a distance of five miles to the Harbor, where they held a post mortem examination of the body of Thomas Bennett, with a jury composed of Mormons, with the exception of three persons, who were "Gentiles;" at which it was proposed by the Mormon jurors, to bring in a verdict that Bennett came to his death while resisting the Law!! while the persons who were not Mormons decided that Bennett was deliberately murdered. A fearful excitement prevailed towards the miscreant Mormons among the Indians on the Island, who hate and fear them, as well as the white population who are not Mormons, and they were retrained from executing summary vengeance upon the murderers only through the urgent advice of Messrs. McKinley, Bowers, Moore and Dinsmore, who had persuaded them to await the execution of the laws of Michigan upon the wretches."

There is usually two sides to a story, and such is the case in the Beaver Island difficulties. While the Mormons are sinners they are often sinned against, as the history of this singular sect for twenty years attests, and no doubt blame attaches to both sides in the late melancholy affair. The Prosecuting Attorney of Mackinac county has sent a letter to Detroit, enclosing the findings of the Coroner's Jury, in which the Detroit Free Press says he "acquits the Mormons of any blame in that most unfortunate transaction."

THE KING OF BEAVER ISLAND. -- The Detroit Free Press says five bills of indictment have been found against King Strang and others, by the Grand Jury of the U. S. Court in session in that city. One for Counterfeiting, one for Obstructing the Mails, and three for Trespass upon Government lands. Twenty-seven Mormons in all have been indicted.

Strang is at large, on bail, which he found no difficulty in procuring. The general opinion in reference to the Beaver Island trouble seems to be, that throughout the whole, the Mormons have been "more sinned against than sinning." An official examination will, we believe, demonstrate the correctness of this opinion. His Majesty, King James, is anxious for a speedy trial, and manifests an unconcern in regard to his own fate and the security of his crown, hardly characteristic of modern monarchs. We have known Republican Presidents to exhibit less non-chalance.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. VII.                             Cleveland, Ohio, Friday, June 13, 1851.                             No. 64.


We have said that we believe the great body of Mormons to be sincere in their belief, and have, therefore, always deprecated any general war upon the sect, for crimes that may have been committed by a few desperadoes whom a prospect of greater license in crimes might have induced to join it.

It has been the fate of every civil and religious reform since the foundation of the world, to draw such into its circle, and should we base our judgment of the honesty of all its advocates upon the dereliction of the few, no class of the "new lights" would remain uncondemned.

We are led to make these remarks by reading an account in the Detroit Advertiser, of a murder committed by the followers of King Strang, upon Thomas Bennett, a resident of Beaver Island. Our readers will recollect its announcement by a telegraphic despatch a few days ago. The following are the leading particulars of the tragedy:

It seems that King Strang, a shrewd, designing rascal, who had succeeded by his consummate finesse, in raising himself to the Kingship of Beaver Island, had taken offence at some conduct on the part of two Brothers Bennett, men of property and good reputation, residing on the Island, but unconnected with the Mormons. -- During the past winter, Stranf gratified his vengeance by burning their houses.

Since that outrage, he has offered them immunity in case they would yield themselves to Mormon laws. They did not see fit to comply with this demand, and have consequently been persecuted in various ways.

Strang has since been arrested under warrants charging him with a number of flagrant crimes, and is now safely lodged in the jail at Detroit. His immediate followers, men equally desperate with himself, probably enraged at the capture of their leader, determined to wreak their vengeance upon the Bennetts. With this design, they assembled together last week, to the number of fifty or more, and armed with clubs, pistols and knives, proceeded to the house of Thos. Bennett, bearing, as they said, a Mormon precept, authorizing them to seize his person and property.

Bennett closed his doors upon this demand, forbidding them to enter; upon which they fired upon the house, until Mr. Bennett, fearing to remain there longer, sought safety in flight, and before he had proceeded many rods, fell dead, pierced by five rifle balls and forty buckshot.

His brother was afterwards pursued, and received a severe, but not fatal wound in the hand.

Their treatment of the murdered man's body was fiendish in the extreme. We have heard of nothing more revolting in the whole history of brutality.

There are many undoubtedly in Michigan who would advocate the rooting out of the whole tribe for this outrage upon the law by the few. It is needless to show in what respect this course would be unjust and infamous, or how many additional murders of the citizens would be perpetrated by the enraged Mormons.

No! let justice be done by the law. Let the authorities of Michigan wake up to a sense of their long neglected duty. Let them go to work promptly and calmly to arrest the true offenders, and if they keep within the record, we cannot believe they will meet with long resistence from the mass.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. IV.                       Sandusky, Ohio, Monday,  June 16, 1851.                       No. 41.

Beaver  Island.

The following letter from the Detroit Advertiser, gives a detailed account of the outrage committed by the Mormons at Beaver Island, news of which was communicated by telegraph a few days since. It is hoped the murderers will be brought to justice by the Michigan Authorities.

Lake Huron, Propellor Pocahontas;      
June 10, 1851.     
To the Editor of the Painesville Telegraph:
      We have just had a brutal murder committed on our Island by the Mormons. The facts, as near as I have been able to learn, are that last winter the Mormons said that every Gentile that owned landed property should leave, dead or alive. They then commenced stealing and burning. Among the persons burnt out were the two Bennetts, one of whom was shot dead, and the other wounded. To-day a gang of Mormons, some fifty or sixty in number, armed with muskets, pistols and rifles, went to make a pretended arrest of the two Bennetts. They went to their house, and on the Bennetts telling them to keep out, they fired some forty or more guns through the door and windows, and broke in the door, five rifle balls entering the body of Thomas Bennett, besides being completely riddled with shot, which caused his instant death, also severely wounding Samuel Bennett. They then took Bennett by the hair of the head, and dragged him to the boat, and threw him in his own boat and carried him to the harbor, about five miles. They then held a post mortem examination by a jury of Mormons, with the exception of three. The Mormon part of the jury were for bringing in a verdict that Bennett came to his death by resisting the law. The Gentiles on the jury, according to testimony, decided that it was a premeditated murder. Prophet Strang said they should destroy the Bennetts, and that the Bennetts, McKinlay, Bowers, Moore and Densmore should leave the Island, dead or alive. On the evening of the murder the excitement was fearful among the Indians and Gentiles; but a few who were disposed to try the law once more, in order to punish those pirates as thry deserve, allayed the excitement in a measure. The investigation of the affair will probably take place in Detroit, in a short time, and the public will then have an opportunity of knowing that there is a regular gang of robbers, well organized by Prophet Strang in our State, and the officers of Mackinac county are linked in and connected with them in their piracies, and for party purposes, to secure their votes.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. VII.                           Cleveland, Ohio, Wednesday, July 9, 1851.                           No. 86.


Yesterday we gave an account of the arrival of the first party of immigrants across the Sierra Nevada. There are over one hundred and fifty wagons in the Carson valley, waiting an opportunity to get through the snow now lying on the summit, and come into California.

The immigrants in the Valley are mostly families. They state that they received the most ungenerous treatment during the winter, from the Mormons at Salt Lake. It seems that the authorities of Great Salt Lake City concluded to impose a heavy tax upon the property, stock, &c., which the immigrants brought into the city. The immigrants refused to pay, and some forty of them were placed in the chain gang; and, in fact, the general treatment of the Mormons towards our citizens is represented to be inhospitable.

Note 1: The above article was reprinted from the Sacramento Transcript of May 27, 1851. Utah's delegate in Congress, Almon Babbitt, addressed the emigrants' taxation complaints in 1849.

Note 2: See Nelson Slater's 1851 book, Fruits of Mormonism and 1851 reports from Rev. Jotham Goodell for more examples of emigrant complaints.



ns. Vol. I.                             Sandusky, Thursday, November 13, 1851.                             No. 147.

Troubles  in  Utah.

The experiment of making good and law-abiding citizens of the Mormons in Utah is likely to prove a failure. It was supposed that the appointment of one of their chief men and apostles among them, Brigham Young, to the office of Territorial Governor would conciliate the minor saints towards the Government at Washington and keep them within bounds. -- Such, however, does not seem to be the case. Gov. Young and his whole community of hopeful saints are represented as being in a state of open rebellion against the Government. He has stopped the mails, driven the officers of the Government out of the country, and plundered them of the money with which they were entrusted by Congress for the erection of public buildings. Twenty thousand dollars appropriated for that purpose, have been seized to pay off the debts of the church, and $24,000 more was about to be grabbed in the same way, when the agent, in whose hands it was, saved it only by flight from Gov. Young's dominions. It is understood that all U.S. officers, except those who are themselves saints, in the Mormon acceptation of the term, have been forced to leave. Congress is denounced in their religious meetings as a "pack of corrupt swindlers," and the church seems to be the supreme authority. The treasonable acts of Young seem to be a proper subject for Executive attention, and if the accounts that have been received are true, it is hoped a fitting example may be made of his apostleship.

There is little doubt that the leaders of the "Church of the Latter day Saints" are corrupt men, and it would be indeed singular if their influence should fail to make its mark upon the rank and file. Wherever they may go, trouble and mischief seem to be their concomitants; and this, no doubt, arises not so much from their peculiar religious notions, as the selfishness and wickedness of the pretended prophets and apostles.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. ?                             Cincinnati, Wednesday, November 25, 1851.                             No. ?

Troubles  in  Utah.

Our readers are aware that United States officers have been driven by the Mormons from Utah, and that the fanatics in the valley of the Salt lakes assert independence. It will doubtless be necessary to send troops to quell the rebellious spirit now manifested. The following extracts show the feelings of BRIGHAM YOUNG and his dupes, or, more properly speaking, his accomplices. It may yet become necessary to drive them from their present location; indeed it appears that rule and ruin is their motto.

Extract of a letter from, a Judicial Officer of the Government at Great Salt Lake City, Territory of Utah, dated

September 20, 1851.      
I shall leave for the States on the 1st October: and most gladly will I go, for I am sick and tired of this place -- of the fanaticism of the people, followed by their violence of feeling towards the Gentiles, as they style all persons not belonging to their church. I have had a feeling and personal proof of their fanatical intolerance within the last few days. I will give you a cursory view of the circumstances and the scene.

As soon atter my arrival here as my illness would permit, I heard from Judge B. and Mr. Secretary H., accounts of the intolerant sentiments of the community towards the Government officers and the Government itself, which filled me with surprise. I learned thet not only were the officers sent here treated with coldness and disrespect, but that the Government of the United States, on all public occasions, whether festive or religious, was denounced in the most disrespectful terms, and often with invectives of great bitterness. I will mention a few instances. The 24th of July is the anniversary of the arrival of the Mormons in this valley. It was on that day of this year that they assembled to commemorate that interesting event. The orator of the day on that occasion spoke bitterly of the course of the United States toward the church of "Latter-Day Saints" in taking a battalion of their men from them for the war with Mexico, while on the banks of the Missouri river, in their flight from the mob at Nauvoo. He said the Government of the United States had devised the most wanton, cruel, and dastardly means for the accomplishment of their ruin, overthrow, and utter extermination.

His Excellency, Governor Young, on the same occasion, denounced in the most sacrilegious terms the memory of the illustrious and lamented General and President of the United States, who has lately gone to the grave, and over whose tomb a nation's tears have scarcely ceased to flow. He exclaimed, "Zachary Taylor is dead and gone to hell, and I am glad of it!" and his sentiments were echoed by a loud amen from all parts of the assembly. Then rising, in the excess of his passion, to his tip-toes, he vociferated, "I prophecy, in the name of Jesus Christ, by the power of the priesthood that is upon me, that any other President of the United States who shall lift his finger against this people will die an untimely death and go to hell!" This kind of feeling I found pervading the whole community, in some individuals more marked than in others.

You may remember that I was authorized by the managers of the Washington National Monument Society, to say to the people of the Territory of Utah, that they would be pleased to receive from them a block of marble, or other stone, to be deposited in the monument "as an offering at the shrine of patriotism." I accordingly called upon Gov. Young, and apprized him of the trurt committed to my hands, and expressed a desire to address the people upon the subject, when assembled in their greatest number. He replied that on the following Monday the very best opportunity would be presented. Monday came, and I found myself at their Bowery, in the midst of at least three thousand people. I was respectfully and honorably introduced by "his Excellency" to the vast assemblage -- I made a speech, though so feeble that I could scarcely stand, and staggered in my debility several times on the platform.

I spoke for two hours, during which time I was favored with the unwavering attention of my audience. Having made some remarks in reference to the judiciary, I presented the subject of the National Monument, and incidentally thereto (as the Mormons supposed,) I expressed my opinions in a full, free, unreserved, yet respectful and dignified manner, in regard to the [defection] of the people here from the Government of the United States. I endeavored to show the injustice of their feelings towards the Government, and alluded boldly and feelingly to the sacrilegious remarks of Gov. Young toward the memory of the lamented Taylor. I defended, as well as my feeble powers would allow, the name and character of the departed hero from the unjust aspersions cast upon them, and remarked that, in the latter part of the assailant's bitter exclamation that "he was glad Gen. Taylor was in hell," he did not exhibit a Christian spirit, and that, if the author did not earlier repent of the cruel declaration, he would perform that task with keen remorse upon his dying pillow. I then alluded to my nativity -- to my citizenship -- to my love of country -- to my duty to defend my country from unjust aspersions, wherever I met them -- and trusted that, when I failed to defend her, my tongue, then employed in her advocacy and praise, might cling to the roof of my mouth, and my arm, ever ready to be raised in her defence, might fall palsied at my side. I then told the audience if they could not offer a block of marble in a feeling of full fellowship! with the people of the United States, as brethren and fellow-citizens, they had better not offer it at all, but leave it unquarried in the bosom of its native mountains.

At the close of my speech the Governor rose, and denounced me and the government in the most brutal and unmeasured terms. The ferment created by his remarks was truly fearful. It seemed as if the people (I mean a large portion of them) were ready to spring upon me like hyenas and destroy me. The Governor, while speaking, said that some persons might get their hair pulled or their throats cut on that occasion. His manner was boisterous, passionate, infuriated in the extreme; and, if he had not been afraid of final vengeance, he would have pointed his finger at me, and I should in an instant have been a dead man. Ever since then the community has been in a state of intense excitement, and murmurs of personal violence and assassination towards me have been freely uttered by the lower orders of the populace. How it will end I don't know. I have just learned that I have been denounced, together with the Government and officers, in the Bowery again to-day, by Governor Young. I hope I shall get off safely. God only knows. I am in the power of a desperate and murderous set. I, however, feel no great fear. So much for defending my country.

I expect all the officers of the Territory, at least Chief Justice B., Secretary Harris, and Captain Day, Indian Agent, will return with me, to return here no more.

Note: The above letter (from Judge Perry A. Brocchus to the U.S. President) was first printed in the Washington, D.C. newspapers. See the New York Herald of Jan. 4, 1852 and the Saint Joseph Gazette of Feb. 4, 1852 for lengthier reports from Judge Brocchus, Judge Lemuel G. Brandenbury, and their fellow "escaping" federal officers.



Vol. 37.                             Canton, Ohio, Feb. 18, 1852.                             No. 44.

Uath -- Polygamy, etc.

The wife of a U. S. Judge in Utah, an intelligent and pure minded woman, lately wrote a letter to a friend in Canton, Ohio, which confirms the statements made by others, that Polygamy is openly taught and practiced by the Mormons in that territory; that it is so interwoven with the very threads of society, that it is impossible to mix in social life at all without encountering it at every turn!

Judge Z. Snow has approved the course of gov. Young, in filling vacancies caused by the return of officers appointed by the President and Senate, and a Court has been opened there. We are indebted to Judge Snow for a copy of the Deseret News of Nov. 15, containing, among other things, an account of the trial of Howard Egan for the murder of Jas. Monroe, who had seduced Egan's wife. The trial results in the acquittal of Egan, mainly because the Mountain law there is, that a man guilty of such a crime ought to suffer death.

Note: The Utah Mormons' innovation of "Mountain law," as a substitute for English Common Law in their courts, was short-lived. Once the latest batch of Federal judges were ensconced in Utah Territory, the regular U. S. legal system was again put back into place. Interestingly, English Common Law disallows bigamy and polygamy, while the Mormons' self-styled "Mountain law" ignored the illegalities of these practices altogether.


Vol. VIII.                           Cleveland, Ohio, Saturday, June 5, 1852.                           No. 57.

Mormons  of  the  Great  Salt  Lake -- Polygamy.

The New York Herald of the 27th ult. has a letter from the Great Salt Lake, which makes some strange expositions of life among that set of wretched fanatics; also a defence of Elder Grant, against Fillmore's fugitive officers. The following gives some account of the depraved system of polygamy which prevails among the "latter day saints."

"In relation to the wife system, I will begin with Brigham. He, as I have before stated, has about fifty -- among them two sisters. -- Heber C. Kimball and [Willard] Richards also have harems of women, from ten to thirty. In fact, all the leading men in the Mormon church have from two to ten. There are several instances here where men have married widows, who have daughters, and now have the mother and daughter both as wives. Heber C. Kimball has the mother and daughter; A. M. Turpin has mother and daughter; C. E. Bolton has mother and daughter; also John Taylor. In fact, all the head men have more or less -- it is more unusual to see a family with but one wife, than to see from two to ten.

Of Governor Young it says:

He has about fifty wives. A few days since, a member of his church wished to marry his own sister, and applied to Governor Young for permission to do so, and to perform the ceremony. All who marry have first to consult him and get his permission. The Governor requested that [if] he would send his sister to him, and let him talk to her upon the subject, he would then advise him to act. She was sent accordingly; the Governor found her young and likely, married her himself, and, after keeping her in his house that night, sent her home to her brother in the morning. The Governor's lawful wife, upon a visit at our boarding house a few days afterwards, laughed and talked of the circumstance as a smart thing in the Governor, and approved his conduct throughout. This is the woman so much lauded by Mr. Kane for her virtues and ladylike conduct.

Now let us take up the charge of polygamy, and Gov. Young with his score of wives, and a sucking baby apiece, airing in one omnibus. -- This is the only specification of the charge. I pronounce it false, and call for the proofs. -- Who are the other polygamists? Our delegate and myself? We are here, and we brand it as a lie. Who else? Speak out. The census says our inhabitants stand in the proportion of about six males to five females. If polygamy be general among us, every wife must have more husbands than every husband has wives, and this our qui tam informers have abstained from charging. Is there any intelligent visitor of our settlements then, who has seen the thing among us? The otherwise abundantly Itinerant officers visited nowhere outside their boarding-house. If they saw anything impure there, weren't they the men to shift their lodgings? What was to hinder their being mercilessly hoaxed, too, with what they showed they wanted so much to hear? "Greediest swallow bolts most gnats." It was Willard Snow, not Professor Orson Spencer, I heard the boys say, stuffed "Brandy Without" with a story that he had two wives, "one at home and one over in the lot." -- His defence being, that his first wife was too sound a sleeper for him; and the great unmixed did not take the joke that "the lot" was our grave-yard, and that the first wife had been snoozing there for a couple of years! -- But, as to this charge of polygamy again: suppose I should admit it at once; whose business is it? Does the Constitution forbid it? Is there any thing in the act for the government of the Territory, forbidding it? And where else are we to find it written down as a crime? Was either Brocchus or Brandebery sent out to hold an ecclesiastical court, and to discipline sinners against the seventh commandment, for the good of their souls? Couldn't their commission be extended then, while they are living in the District of Columbia on full pay for doing nothing (except writing lies tor the newspapers), so as to reform morals there?

(Elder Grant, besides denying the charge of polygamy and apologising for it if true, also justifies and explains the idea of using the violent language with which they are charged. -- Here it is with a specimen of their style):

I don't ask you to believe as I do, that Mormonism is going to be the great entering wedge of new civilization into Asia. But what I have to say now, and do say, is that the people of Utah, in their manners evince more of this adaptation, as you would call it, more of the characteristic ways of Western men, and in their Speech also bring out more forcibly those hyperbolic fancies which, though you style them screamerisms, are the earnest of future splendors in Oriental diction, than the Citizens of any other part of the Union. If the Territory of Utah is to be called to account for the sayings of its citizens or their ex-presidents, I offer myself again for condign punishment. At one of our public celebrations, the name of a late chief magistrate being proposed for a groan, it was received with such spirit that the chair called upon me to couple it with an impromptu sentiment, and, glasses being fresh filled for the purpose with the whitest water, I gave:

"Matty and mobocrats -- May they be winked at by blind people, kicked across lots by cripples, nibbled to death by young ducks, and carried to hell through the key hole by bumble-bees!"   (Signed Chesterfield.)

These saints, it must be admitted, are some!

Notes: (forthcoming)


The  Ohio  State  Journal.

Vol. ?                           Columbus, Ohio, Tuesday, June 22, 1852.                           No. ?


The widow of the late Joe Smith, the founder of Mormonism, is now said to be the wife of a tavern keeper in Nauvoo, and makes quite a respectable land lady. She was always more respectable than Joe.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. VIII.                           Cleveland, Ohio, Friday, July 2, 1852.                           No. 81.


This city of the Mormons once had 20,000 inhabitants; there are now about 2,000. One half the houses the Mormons left have been removed or pulled down, and the other half are tenantless. Each lot contained an acre. -- In walking through its deserted streets I startled several quails, in the midst of the once populous city. The mansion of Joe Smith is kept by his wife, (once his widow but now again a wife, of another and a live man,) as a tavern. Between this mansion and the river are the remains of a famous hotel, which was abandoned after its walls had reached the second story; the walls are of fine pressed brick, with marble doorsills and caps. Joe's store-house is also standing. The Masonic Hall is a fine brick building three stories high. I am told that all the Mormons were Masons. Their lodge was under the jurisdiction of the Grand Lodge of the State of Illinois. Smith, I am told, initiated some of the "mothers in the church," then the charter was taken from them and the lodge closed. The front wall and the one next to it, which formed the vestibule, are all that is left standing of the achievements of fanaticism called 'the temple.'

A company of French socialists have purchased a portion of the property, the site of the ruins of the temple included.... -- Madison Courier.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Daily  Commercial  Register.

ns. Vol. II.                             Sandusky, Wednesday, September 1, 1852.                             No. 79.


The Washington correspondent of the New York Courier furnishes the following information in relation to the judicial appointments for this territory:

"The President yesterday withdrew the nomination of Orson Hyde as one of the Judges of the Territorial Court of Utah. The nomination of Mr. H. has been before the Senate since the 17th of May, last. Hyde is a Mormon and a polygamist, and is not a lawyer. Judge Stokely, of Ohio, who was nominated and confirmed as a member of this Court, Chief Justice, I believe, is reported to have declined the appointment. Mr. Snow, who is now the only acting Judge, is a Mormon, and as such, acceptable to the people of the territory. It is no longer denied that the Mormon people are polygamists. They have admitted the fact in official communications through their elders. Our relations with these fanatics are likely to occasion much trouble. Early in May the Secretary of State informed the two judges and the Secretary of the Territory, who had returned to Washington, that unless they forthwith repaired to Utah, and entered upon the discharge of their official duties, successors would be appointed. They all declined except upon the condition that Brigham Young should be removed, and new nominations were made accordingly. Judge Brochus has issued a well written statement giving his reasons for the course pursued by him, and very clearly showing that no officer of the United States can execute the laws and fulfil his duties in Utah, while the place of the chief magistrate is filled by a person of Young's character. He proves, also, that the design of the Mormons is to build up an independent State, and that they only delay to throw off the authority of the United States until such a time as they shall feel better assured of impunity than they now do.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Daily  Commercial  Register.

ns. Vol. II.                             Sandusky, Monday, September 13, 1852.                             No. 97.


POLYGAMY AMONG THE MORMONS. -- It is undenied by those high in authority in the Mormon Church, that polygamy is not only tolerated, but advocated, within its jurisdiction. Brother Pratt, "Apostle of the Latter Day Saints," has replied in a printed handbill, to an inquiry made a short time since by the San Francisco Herald, as to the extent it is practised in the Church and by its leader, Brigham Young. Respecting the latter, he says, "his morality is above all suspicion;" and he presumes "the number of his family does not exceed the estimates which have been going the rounds of the American press." As it was reported that Mr. Young had sixteen wives, more or less, (a majority of them rearing young prophets, it is thus tacitly admitted that this is the correct number.

The idea that any immorality is involved in the possession of an indefinite number of wives, is indignantly repelled. -- N.Y. Jour. of Com.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. 38.                           Canton, Ohio, Wednesday, October 20, 1852.                          No. 27.


==> Perry E. Brocchus, one of the Judges who fled Utah some time since, and refused to go to his post, is out in the Washington Union with a long letter, condemning the action of the Administration, and denying its power to remove him.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. VIII.                           Cleveland, Ohio, Tuesday, December 7, 1852.                           No. 217.

The Mormons -- Their Polygamy --
The Salt Lake Valley.


Whether the Mormons do or do not allow polygamy has been a mooted question. The following letter from a Wisconson overland traveller, the Milwaukie News says, is addressed to the mother of the writer, and has been furnished for publication to that paper.

Salt Lake City, July 20, 1852.      
I arrived here before a grand jubilee of the Mormons. They were celebrating the anniversary of the arrival of the pioneers, who first, planted their colony, and, I believe, first discovered the valley. The procession was magnificent. I will give it to you as I saw it -- Marshal of the day proceding, followed by flags, band, and a large painting, exhibiting the pioneers of 1846, crossing the upper ferry of Platte River. Pioneers then followed -- pen and scribe; every sermon is taken down in short hand, and inscribed in the big book; men with the different implements and tools of almost every art and profession in the world; forty old men and a flag; forty old women, representing the mothers in Israel, their flag being inscribed with "Our children are our hope;" twenty-four young men with their banner, motto, "Union and Liberty;" twenty-four young ladies, daughters of Zion; twenty-four boys; twenty-four girls; band, soldiers, and eighteen bishops, bringing up the rear. I am quite confident there were seven thousand persons present; and taken altogether, it was a sight well worth seeing, out amidst these hills. In the evening balls and parties prevailed all over the city.

Yesterday, Orson Pratt, one of their apostles, gave us quite a sensible sermon. Brigham Young is the prophet, seer, revelator, and head of the church. He is assisted by two councilors, twelve Apostles, and eighteen bishops. -- The prophet and (under Whig rule,) the governor, was present with some of his wives, who came and went in a large, elegant open carriage. He has living with him in the city, in one house, sixteen wives and thirty children. -- Each wife, with her progeny, lives in a separate furnished apartment, and spins, sews, weaves, &c., &c. All this is true. I went over the premises with a view to entertain you for an hour, and I believe, saw pretty much everything.

The person I board with has two wives; Dr. Richards, a Councillor, has six, and all of them, good looking, healthy women. Thus, you see, polygamy is openly allowed and supported by these Mormons. A man, having a right to as many wives as he can find and support, takes a fancy, goes to a justice and swears he is able to support her, and the marriage comes off with due ceremony -- and so it goes on, as he grows richer, without limit.

A Mormon moving into the valley, gives one-tenth of his property to the church, and one-tenth of his productive industry yearly, whatever it may be.

The city contains a population of six thousand souls, and in the whole valley there are probably fifteen thousand, which will be largely increased this season.

There are warm and hot springs here; the last at boiling heat. Salt is manufactured from the lake water, which yields one bowl of salt from three of water. There are also mines of coal and iron. Lumber is scarce; $50 per thousand.

The city is watered by more than one hundred streams, brought from the neighboring mountains, of the purest water.

This country is certainly as beautiful and fertile as any I ever saw. They raise all we do in Wisconsin, and in far greater proportion. Vegetables are peculiarly excellent, and after the hard bread and bacon of the plains j taste very well, I assure you.

The Mormons I find quite kind and obliging, Brigham Young is a fine looking man, resembling, a little, Judge H. His wives are mostly pretty, and the [little] legitimates, whom the people here call young prophets, are all good looking and well dressed.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Daily  Commercial  Register.

ns. Vol. II.                             Sandusky, Thursday, December 30, 1852.                             No. 188.


THEOLOGY OF THE MORMONS. -- The Mormons believe in the authenticity of the Old Testament, and in the divine character, mission and revelation of Jesus Christ. But they further believe that similar revelations of the Divine will were made to Joseph Smith, and are now being made as circumstances require, to Brigham Young, and the other patriarchs of the church. The Mormons believe in polytheism as well as polygamy. The two go hand in hand. The one creates and proves the necessity of the other. According to the original ideas of their theology they are themselves all gods, and progenitors of gods, varying in power, intelligence and dignity, who have humiliated themselves for awhile by appearing upon the earth and assuming a human form. One of their greatest duties in this, their humiliated character, is to propogate their species and people, of not only this, but also worlds unnumbered and uncreated, with their descendants -- gods like themselves. Hence the great necessity and reason for the adoption of the system of the plurality of wives, for the more speedy accomplishment of this, the great object of their being. After death they will ascend to heaven resume their former godship, and there live in a state of perpetual beautific enjoyment, surrounded by their numerous wives and posterity. In their belief there is no such place as a separate distinct hell. -- Hell consists simply in the deprivation of those who are unworthy, from the joys and pleasures of Heaven.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. ?                                  Cincinnati, Ohio, January 26 1853.                                  No. ?

For the Cincinnati Nonpareil.

"The North Country." -- The Polar Regions.

Messrs. Editors: The recent discoveries of Arctic navigators have demonstrated the fact that an open sea surrounds the North Pole, instead of mountains of ice and a frozen ocean. The ancient and popular delusion that mountains of ice and a frozen sea extended to the North Pole, in now becoming obsolete. A new theory has suddenly supplanted the old delusion. A great, change has been produced on this subject in the minds of men of intelligence. Tnere have, heretofore, been limits set to Gentile locomotion in that region; but when we understand the geography of the Polar regions, we may possibly discover that there are entrances into the interior of the earth at the North and South Poles, and that the interior of the earth is inhabited by the ten tribes of Israel. In defence of these ideas, I will notice the statements of Lieutenant Osborne, Commander of the Pioneer in the English expedition which was sent in search of Sir John Franklin in 1850 and 1851. Capt. Penny, of the same expedition, confirms the truth of these statements. They state that, beyond the icy sea which they visited, they saw open water as far as the eye could penetrate, to the North. They also state that they "saw long flights of birds retreating from their summer breeding places somewhere beyond the broad fields of ice." On the 5th of September, whilst they were seeking deliverance from a mass of ice off Point Innis, Lieut. Osborne states, "we had abundant amusement and occupation in observing the movements of shoals of white whales. They were what the fishermen on board called " running South" a term used to express the steady and rapid passage of the fish from one feeding ground to the other. From the masthead, the water about us appeared filled with them, whilst they constantly rose and blew, and hurried on like the birds we had lately seen, to better regions in the South. That they had been North to breed was undoubted, by the num- ber of young "calves" in every shoal, The affection between mother and young was very evident, for occasionally some stately white whale would loiter on her course, as if to scrutinize the new and strange objects now floating in these unplougbed waters, whilst the calf, all gambols, rubbed against the mother's side, or played about her. * * * It was a subject of deep interest and wonder to sea this migration, and I determined to search the numerous books with which we were well stored, to endeavor to satisfy my mind with some reasonable theory, founded upon the movements of bird and fish, as to the existence of a Polar Ocean or Polar Continent." This article is an extraction and revision from one that I commenced writing about five months since and competed about three months since. My design was, to show that an open sea and an undiscovered and inhabited land are situated beyond the icy sea. Since I penned these arguments that open sea has been entered. The two steam vessels that accompanied the former expedition from England have again been sent into the Arctic regions, and have penetrated into the open sea. Their names are the Isabella and the Pioneer. The former returned after making a short exploration in the open sea, leaving the latter to make further explorations. The report brought by the Isabella obviates the necessity of any arguments from me to prove that there is an open sea North of the icy regions. That fact is established by the return of the Isabella. I shall, therefore, confine myself to those arguments which, I imagine will prove, (as far as argument can prove any fact) that a "Polar Continent" is located North of the "Polar Sea." The existence of an open sea, north of the icy region and the migration of birds and fishes with their young, show that there is a more genial climate around the North Pole, and there must be land there, otherwise these birds could not raise there young there. Now, it is a well known fact, that the heat of the Sun becomes weaker and weaker as we proceed to the North. It is, therefore, contrary to the laws of nature for the Sun to produce more heat at the North Pole than it does 16 degrees South of it. There is, therefore, an undiscovered source of heat more powerful than the Sun, which prevents an incessant accumulation of mountains of ice in that part of the world. If the cold is so intense in the 74th degree of North Latitude that the sea is covered with a mass of ice during ten months of every year, surely 16 degrees further North would exhibit cold of far greater magnitude. Is it not, therefore, a correct inference, that if the Sun was the only source of heat at the North Pole there would be a solid mass of ice instead of open water, from Wellington Channel to the Pole? The invisibility to us of the source of heat at the Pole, may be accounted for on the supposition that it is located in the interior of the earth and communicated through an opening at the Pole.

It is useless for any one to ridicule this theory, for there is evidently an invisible source of heat in the north and it could, not be invisible if it was not located in the interior of the earth,
for the distance is too small from the regions that have been visited for this source of heat to be located on the outward surface of the earth at the polo, and be invisible. The various phenomena which are extensively displayed in the heavens in the Arctic regions, may be reflections from this body of heat. It is well known that these phenomena are far more frequently and brilliantly displayed in the Arctic regions than in any other part of the northern hemisphere, and that no phenomena of this kind emanates from the south pole, neither are they visible in high southern latitudes. The phenomena to which I allude are the aurora borealis, mock suns and mock moons. Many have imagined that the aurora borealis is produced by the reflection of the sun on the ice at the north pole, but as it has been shown by the Arctic navigators, (who have lately returned from the north) that there is an open sea north of the icy regions and as this phenomena has been seen most extensively in close proximity to the open sea, the reflection of the sun on the ice could not create this phenomena. When this phenomena is visible, the polar regions are then altogether destitute of the light of the sun. It is also seen when the sun has not enlightened those regions for several weeks. If it was caused by the reflection of the sun would not the same effect be produced at the south pole. There is a mystery connected with the magnet which is beyond the comprehension of scientific men. The cause of this attraction is unknown. Future discoveries at the north,, may elucidate this mystery. The Aurora Borealis is seen more extensively in high northern latitudes, but the power of the magnet is destroyed, by a near approach to the north pole. In high southern latitudes, the power of the magnet is unimpaired. If severe frost, or immense masses of ice, destroy the magnet's power, the result will be the same in high southern latitudes, as in high northern latitudes. As it is only in the Arctic regions that the power of the magnet is impaired and destroyed, it must be in consequence of a peculiarity which is connected with the north pole. Allow me to suggest a few ideas concerning this peculiarity. I will suppose that there is an opening or entrance to the interior surface of the earth, which is located at the north pole, and that this entrance is several hundreds of miles in diameter, and also, that the influence which attracts the magnet is diffused universally ever the whole extent of this opening. Let a magnet be brought so near to this opening that the east side of it is situated northeast of the magnet, and the western side is situated northwest of the magnet, the influence which I suppose attracts the magnet to the north, being too much scattered abroad from the northeast to the northwest, it cannot attract the magnet to the north, and is therefore powerless. These and other peculiarities which might be described, which are connected with the north pole, will probably be all explained in a short time, by tho explorations which are now being made in that region. We may yet discover, that the interior surface of the earth contains a larger population than the exterior surface, and that Sir John Franklin and his company are there, in "the north country." [I]. S.

Note 1: The above rambling article was submitted by Elder Isaac Sheen, a great fan of the "Symmes Hole" theory for a "hollow earth," inhabited by the ten lost tribes of Israel. Elder Sheen renewed his advocacy of this harebrained scheme in an article published in the Aug. 15, 1872 issue of the RLDS Saints' Herald, in which he said: "I believe the earth to be a hollow sphere... years before this, and now, the general outlines of the fact of the Lost Tribes being in the north country have been testified of; both in the Bible, Book of Mormon and the Doctrine and Covenants; by ancient and by modern prophets..." Sheen's reference to "the Doctrine and Covenants" scriptural authority on this point can be compared with the teachings of Joseph Smith, Jr. on the subject, as reported by one of his former disciples, Elder Ezra Booth, on Oct. 24, 1831: "The condition of the ten tribes of Israel since their captivity... has never been satisfactorily ascertained. But these [Mormon] visionaries have discovered their place of residence to be contiguous to the north pole; separated from the rest of the world by impassable mountains of ice and snow. In this sequestered residence, they enjoy the society of Elijah the Prophet, and John the Revelator, and perhaps the three immortalized Nephites..."

Note 2: Elder Sheen's arguments for a warm polar region (surrounding an opening in the earth) were taken, in part, from two publications authored by Sherard Osborn: Stray Leaves from an Arctic Journal (1852) and The Polar Regions... (1854). Sheen further extrapolated Osborn's reporting, into a full-blown hollow earth argument, in a January, 1856 article published in the Philadelphia Saturday Evening Post, entitled "The Open Polar Sea." An excerpt from this article was reprinted in the Buffalo Western Literary Messenger of Feb. 1856.

Note 3: See LDS author Frank Culmer's 1886 booklet, The Inner World for a Utah Mormon view on the topic. Whether or not Smith himself had heard of Symmes' theories at an early date remains unknown, certainly they were being discussed in the newspapers as late as 1831 -- some of his first followers were, no doubt, familiar with the well publicized hollow-earth ideaespecially as it was publicized in the 1820 novel, Symzonia, in which the inhabitants of the hollow Earth are pictured as a Hebrew-speaking people. One piece of "evidence" for Israelites inside the earth, which Culmer might have cited, but did not, was a recollection of a conversation with Joseph Smith, Jr., that Elder Benjamin F. Johnson recorded in his posthumously published 1947 autobiography: "I asked where the nine and a half tribes of Israel were. 'Well,' said [Joseph Smith], 'you remember the old caldron or potash kettle you used to boil maple sap in for sugar, don't you?' I said yes. 'Well,' said he, 'they are in the north pole in a concave just like the shape of that kettle. And John the Revelator is with them, preparing them for their return.'" If this bit of historical conversation does not proved that Smith was an advocate of "Symmes' Hole," it at least lends credibility to the idea that Smith professed that the missing Israelite tribes are within the protective walls of a great concave depression (or enormous cavity) located about where Symmes' placed the vast northern entrance to his hollow earth.


Vol. IX.                           Cleveland, Ohio, Monday, April 25, 1853.                           No. 21.


MORMONISM IN ILLINOIS. -- Bill Smith, the only surviving brother of Joe Smith, the celebrated Mormon prophet, has formed a settlement in Lee county, Illinois, where he preaches and practices all the doctrines of that peculiar sect. According to his statement he is persecuted by the Gentiles. A short time ago he was brought before the Circuit Court, at Dixon, at the instigation of a "spiritual wife." We copy the following from the Dixon Telegraph:

At the present term of our curcuit court, William Smith was brought before it, having been arrested in consequence of an affidavit made by one of the female members of the church, in which she set forth that she had been induced to believe that it was necessary for her salvation that she should become his spiritual wife; the result of which was the same that usually accompanies cases where no spiritualism is claimed. On account of the inability of the witness to attend at this term, the trial was continued. The defendant says that it all arises in the persecution from the Gentiles.

As another item on the same subject, we may state that Smith has himself now pending in the same court an application for a divorce, on the ground that his wife, while at Nauvoo, was initiated into the mysteries of, and as he says, "took seven degrees" in spiritual wifery. So it seems according to his ideas of the doctrines of that particular branch of the church militant, what is sauce for the goose is not sauce for the gander.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. IX.                           Cleveland, Ohio, Tuesday, May 31, 1853.                           No. 50.



Mormon Policy -- Consecration -- Mr. Strang and his Portrait --
Queer Revelations from Heaven -- An entire History of
the Quarrel -- Outrages upon the Fishermen --
The Liquor Trade -- The Prophet.


We have received from an intelligent and well informed resident of Mackinac, the following account of Mormon customs and policy, and a full statement of the cause of the quarrel which now threatens war in that region.

Macinac, May 18, 1853.      
Editors Palin Dealer. -- Northern Michigan, at no very distant period, is doomed to be the scene of angry contention -- perhaps to witness a renewal of the tragedy of Nauvoo. The "Latter Day Saints," as they presumptuously call themselves, are rapidly "lengthening their cords and strengthening their stakes, and stretching forth the curtains of their habitations." Their system is a curious melange of politics and religion; a graft of modern fanaticism upon the ancient Levitical model. All out of the pale of the church are denominated "Gentiles," and their king-prophet claims a kind of roving commission to disregard the accepted doctrine of meum and tuum, and to mete out Canaanitish justice to whomsoever may oppose his pretensions.

The doctrine of consecration, or the right to appropriate Gentile property in the name of the Lord, and for the delectation of the true saints, is systematically inculcated and most conscientiously reduced to practice. "Sacrifices" are offered and advertised in their public prints; and one sees, as in a living panorama, a resurrection of those "blessed times" of Moses and Joshua, with sundry variations to adapt it to the electrical advancement of the nineteenth century.

Mr. Strang, who concentrates in his own sacred person the offices of prophet, priest, and king, is a person of no mean abilities; shrewd, calculating, rapid in his combinations and unscrupulous in the use of instrumentalities -- quite an Anacharsis inter Scythias, and decidedly, among his tribe, the "big dog of the tan-yard." In person he is above the middle stature -- of spare make, and perhaps some forty years of age. His cranium is of rather a noticeable build, and intellectually developed. His eye is hazel, of a mild expression, and somewhat dreamy, withal. His address is pleasing, and his general manners sufficiently engaging. His people, as a whole, with a saving exception or two, are "lewd fellows of the baser sort," -- lazy and loaferish, but implicitly obedient, credulous to a marvel, and with a decided predilection for saintship and small larcenies. A fact or two will best explain this matter, and may serve to define the position of our citizens on this subject. It would seem that in addition to the "gold plates" and their divine inscriptions, this favored people have received from heaven a surrender of fee simple of all the islands in lakes Michigan and Huron, Green Bay and Ste. Mary's river. Not, indeed, for the "filthy lucre" of $1.25 per acre, but as an untrammeled gift, and under tenure of jus divinum.

The group of Beaver Islands, the Foxes, Gull Island, and the Summer Island groups, are all within the limits of Emmet County, and subject to Mormon jurisdiction. These islands and the northern portion of Lake Michigan, between Pt. St. Ignace on the East, and Green Bay on the West, are the principal, if not the only grounds of the fishing trade of this region. Mackinac and the vicinity are mainly dependent upon this traffic for subsistence. Our fishermen, from time immemorial, have occupied these grounds, and until these Mormon Amalekites settled in the land, have unmolestedly pursued their occupation. As the north shore (so called) is the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, the boundaries of Emmet, in the Southern Peninsula could, with no shadow of propriety, be made to embrace the Northern main land. But mark the cunning of the serpent! The initial point of the North line of Emmet County, is placed on the main land in Green Bay, at the junction of the State of Michigan and Wisconsin, thence generally eastward, following the curvature of the coast, making circuit of the several bays, until it approached St. Ignace, a few miles westward of Mackinac; and thence taking a giant's stride over the Island to Pt. St. Vital, about thirty miles to the eastward of Mackinac, the foot of Mormonism is again planted, and the township of Drummond -- a Mormon dependency -- is located and organized, and attached to the County of Chippewa. Thus, for practical purposes, the entire fishing grounds are thrown within the jurisdiction of Emmet County; Mackinac is girdled with a cordon venenenx of Mormonism, and Drummond Island, with its convenient harbors and still more convenient proximity to the Canadian line, affords an admirable nest whence the vultures may sally forth securely to their prey. In a recent manifesto published in their official organ, the Northern Islander, they declare that "from Old Mackinac to the west line of the State, and south to Grand Traverse Light, the Lake and all the boys are exclusively in Emmet County." They leave the barren shore to our fishermen, but lay claim to bay, and inlet, to broad lake and narrow strait, to each isle and rock, and to the "soil under water." In effect, when the fisherman pushes his boat from the beach, he subjects himself to the arrogant claims of the Mormons, and throws himself upon the tender mercies of those whose commiseration is cruelty. Keeping even pace with this repulsive hypothesis, is the still more infamous practice. The nets of the fishermen have been stolen from the waters, their boats have been taken from the beach at night; and at the fishing station of Point au Bouleau (Birch Point) over a hundred barrels of fish have been wantonly destroyed; and six or eight houses reduced to ashes! The amount of property ruthlessly sacrificed or carried off bodily at this one station exceeds in value $2,000.

The Islander of the 12th inst., contains another ominous announcement, and sufficiently suggestive of what we may expect for the future. And even as the evil one borrows the raiment of sanctity wherewith to hide the hoof, so does the triply consecrated prophet, priest and king arrogate to himdself a virtue to conceal a meditated outrage. After stating that "there is a prevalent custom of sending out trading vessels to trade on the fishing grounds with a supply of liquors," he continues, "We wish it understood that authority to sell intoxicating liquors in Mackinac does not carry with it the right to sell on Lake Michigan. From old Mackinac to the west line of the State," &c., as before quoted, "if the trade be [persisted] in, the Sheriff will go out with sufficient force and make arrests in all such cases. The law will be enforced whatever the cost," &c. It is undoubtedly true that in the cold and toilsome occupation of fisherman, he requires, or imagines he does, an occasional stimulant, although drunkenness is rarely seen on the fishing ground. -- The small vessels that ply between the grounds and Mackinac, often carry more or less liquors to those who may choose to order them. And this "trade," as it is called, and which very probably will be "persisted in," affords a plausible pretext for exercising the right of search, for making "forcible arrests" by a Mormon Sheriff and his posse, for surrendering the culprit to Mormon Law, for his conviction by a foregone conclusion, for his punishment by fine or imprisonment, as the case may be, for the detention, if not the loss of his vessel, and must be productive of a ruinous sacrifice of the interests of his employer, and of the ultimate abandonment of the fishing ground, and the entire annihilation -- the great object aimed at in all these movements -- of the business and prosperity of Mackinac. The overt acts of violence already prepetrated, the threats, conflagrations and thieveries of the spring, furnish us with a key to explain what use may be made of the pretended right to search and arrest, and to what we expect at the hands of the Mormons. Whether the people in Michillmackinac County will stand idly by, and without a struggle, see their best interests destroyed, remains yet to be seen. A weighty responsibility devolves upon the Committee of Safety, and great zeal and indignation pervade all classes of community. It is deeply felt that the time for determined action has arrived, and be assured that caution shall not degenerate into inaction or prudence into pusillanimity.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Daily  Commercial  Register.

ns. Vol. III.                           Sandusky, Wednesday, September 28, 1853.                           No. 108.

Ruins of the Mormon Temple and the Icarians.

A correspondent of the Morning Star, at Dover, in this State [N.H.], under the date of June 17th, gives some interesting facts in relation to the city of Nauvoo, Mormonism, &c.

Before the temple was burnt, it was nearly finished. Now, all that remains is the end facing the river, and this is seen for a few miles back in the country, and at some distance on the river, below and above. It was built of limestone; the outside hewn and carved, exhibiting some of the most beautiful figures that I ever saw made on stone. The location for the city is considered one of the best on the river. It is on a point of land formed by a great bend in the river, overlooking quite a portion of Iowa. A considerable part of the city is below the bluff, yet is so high that it is never inundated. The present number of inhahitants is about 3,000.

The ruins of the temple are not the only ruins. Many of the brick houses, in the back part of the city, are deserted, and the remains of many burnt houses continue upon the grounds. Had the Mormons, even with their humbug, conducted a little better, this would have been a great place. Most of the villages in this county were under their control.

Joe Smith's widow has married, and lives in the city. She and her husband keep the Mansion House. Her oldest son is about twenty years of age. They have no fellowship with Mormonism. Boynton, who first preached in Maine as a Mormon, and induced about thirty families, with their innocent children, to leave my native town, has, for twelve years, been an Anti-Mormon. Yet Mormonism is still flourishing. A few miles below, thousands are now encamped, preparing to emigrate to the Salt Lake country. Most of the Mormon sufferers have been women and children.

The Temple site is owned by a company of Socialists, called Icarians, mostly French. They number about 400, publish a weekly paper in English, and are infidels. I visited their buildings -- had an interview with their President. They are noted as being peaceable and temperate. They all dine in one room, yet every man has a separate room for his family.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. 10.                 Conneaut, Ohio, Thursday, November 17, 1853.                 No. ?

Death of Aaron Wright

It becomes our painful duty to chronicle the death of this pioneer, a long-honored and worthy citizen. He died at 12 o'clock on Thursday last, in the 79th year of his age, after a very brief illness. Mr. Wright settled here in 1798, and at the time of his death was the oldest resident of the township. In an early day he was an active and prominent citizen, and enjoyed largely the esteem and confidence of his neighbors, and among the early pioneers was distinguished for his public efforts and acts of benevolence. For many years entrusted with the office of magistrate, it gave him an opportunity for an extensive acquaintance, and his counsel and advice was not unfrequently sought. In all the relations of life he sustained an unblemished character, and his home was always the welcome home of the pioneer, many of whom survive him, and deeply mourn his decease. And although he was not a professed follower of Christ, his assistance was never withheld in promoting the cause of the Church, and Ministers and laymen always met a cheerful reception and a hospitable entertainment at his board. When the country was new and an almost unbroken wilderness, his house was opened for religious meetings, and as often his services and time was tendered in inviting his far distant neighbors to assemble under his roof to listen to the Gospel from some Missionary who then visited this section at regular intervals. As a citizen he enjoyed the esteem of all, and his labors and pecuniary means were generously contributed in promoting the interests of our village, entitling him to regard as a public benefactor. He lived a long life of usefulness and his sun has gone down dimmed with age, leaving behind him to mourn his loss a widow and two children, and a large and numerous connection and acquaintances.

Note 1: The genealogical entries in the Zaphna Lake family Bible say that Aaron Wright "died the 28th December 185[3] aged 7[8]." The date given is perhaps his burial day, rather than his actual day of passing, which the newspaper implicitly records as Nov. 10, 1853. This entry places his birth in the year 1775. The Bible entry for Aaron's birth reads: "Aaron Wright, father to Harriet, wife of Z[aphna]. Lake was born the 19th of March, A.D. 1775." In other words, at the time of his death, Aaron Wright's age was about 78 years and 8 months, placing him in the "in the 79th year of his age."

Note 2: The grave marker now in Conneaut Cemetery replaces earlier monuments for Mr. and Mrs. Wright and the inscriptions on the new stone were not copied correctly (for example her age at death is shown as "22," while other records show it was 79. The replacement inscription reads "75" for his age at death, but the original may well have read "78." Probably the Bible and newspaper information is the most reliable, making 1775 his birth year.

Note 3: For more information on this "Conneaut witness" see his web-page in the online "Spalding Saga" historical series.


Vol. IX.                             Cleveland, Ohio, Friday, January 13, 1854.                             No. 245.


THE MORMON SETTLEMENTS AT GREAT SALT LAKE CITY -- THE SPIRITUAL-WIFE SYSTEM. -- A correspondent with the Oregonian, who has just made the trip from Oregon to Utah, gives the following description of the Mormon settlement at Great Salt Lake City:

After leaving Fort Hall, we had a pleasant ride of two and a half days to the first Mormon settlements -- and to watermelons! On account of anticipated troubles with the Indians the people have collected into forts, so called, or villages of adobes built closely round a small plaza. Though the absence of wood makes the country look bare, yet, everywhere are the evidences of an industrious people, in the stacks of hay and grain, and great piles of yellow "some pumpkins" and in the abundance of other vegetables. The absence of wood as a building material, gives the houses of sticks and mud rather a hut-like appearance; but these structures are being rapidly replaced by good adobe edifices.

The city has the look of a great collection of small farms, each lot being large and cultivated in crops; all having the air of rustic plenty. The city is magnificently laid out, with noble broad streets well kept. The stern, rugged mountains in the distance, seem to wall in the valley and separate the Mormons, with all their doctrines, from the rest of the world. -- They are building an adobe wall, fifteen feet high around the ten acre lot in the centre of the town, in which are the foundations of the temple and the completed tabernacle or meeting house, a plain, large and neat room, holding 1,500 or 2,000 persons. The council house and post office are good, stuccoed structures; all of these doing great credit to the energy of the people.

Brother Brigham lives in a neat white cottage, with a "double coach house" but is building a fine new house. There is no doubt of his having about thirty wives, and that sometimes several of them go to church in an omnibus, but as all these things are part of a religious system, all things are conducted in order. I am stopping with a plain, but respectable family, the daughter of which, a fine young woman, is one of the twenty-five spiritual wives of Kimball, the second in command. She says she does not perceive much difference between spiritual and other wives.

Note: Missing from the above reprint are the final words of the Oregonian's text: "They have discovered good coal in the immediate vicinity, and an abundance of iron ore in the southern part of the territory. They are talking of railroads, &c. Brigham Young is evidently a very able man."


Vol. IX.                             Cleveland, Ohio, Saturday, May 13, 1854.                             No. ?

Elder  McKnight  Married.

We have received the Deseret News, with the following marriage notice marked to us, no doubt by the Rev. Groom: --

Married on Tuesday, March 7th, at the residence of Ferrimore Little, Kanyon Creek, by President Joseph Young, Elder James McKnight, printer, and Miss Cornelia A. Stillson.

Well done "Mc" --. We always marked you for a "progressive." This Rev. was once a boy, strange as it may now seem, and learned to read and write, spell and parse in a Cleveland Free School, of which we, i.e., the Senior, was the teacher. He afterwards learned to set type in our office, but he learned his religion from a stump speech made by a Mormon elder up in the grove on the corner of Erie and Kinsman streets, near where the brick school house now stands. After being seized with this strange phantasy he talked with us about it and asked with the coolest cander if he could be mistaken. He always seemed to have the utmost confidence in our opinion about worldly matters, but as a spiritual advisor he doubted. The next we hear of him is as above. An Elder and married, -- but with only one wife mentioned, How is that, Mc? Have you wedded but one as yet, and are you not wooing more? Is it ministerial modesty in you that keeps you thus hampered, or is it want of money and means of support? Tell us (in confidence of course) all about it -- correspond with the Plain Dealer, which circulates more largely than any other paper in Kirtland, the ancient Mormondom and where the first temple reared by the first prophet new stands. The woman worshipers want to know if after marrying one woman, she is allowed to say about who shall be wife No. 2? Your chief Elder Brigham, it is said has forty wives. He is acknowledged to be your model man. Now tell us how he carries on his domestic affairs and keeps peace in so extensive a family. With but one wife it is difficult for some people in the States (we mean states of sin and misery) to live amicably. Tell us how the saints do it, and we know of swarms of sinners hereabouts who will turn Mormon to-morrow. Does Brigham deal by all his dears alike? Do they all sit at the same table, served to the same sass, and all at the same time; or do they wait their turn in the order of their marriage, or how? Does Brigham dress them all alike, in uniform, and is that in the bloomer style? When Brigham goes a riding does he take them all, or does he avail himself of that passage of our Scripture which says, "the one shall be taken and the other left?" If he takes them all, what does he do with the babies?

Now Mc., (Elder McKnight we should have said,) answer us these few plain but pointed interrogations, and we will lay your communication before our fifty thousand readers, all for the glory of God and the Church of the latter day saints.

Note: This marriage (to the daughter of Brigham Young's sister, Susannah Young Stilson) was Elder McKnight's second turn at being a Mormon groom. He had previously married Sarah Jane Thompson in 1852 (who should not be confused with another Sarah, who married another LDS James McKnight that same year). See the reply to Editor Gray, published in the Plain Dealer of Oct. 12, 1854. See also the on-line feature, "James McKnight: Mormon Advocate" for more details.


Vol. 40.                             Canton, Ohio, June 21, 1854.                             No. 10.


MORMON CHILDREN. -- Of all the children that come under our observation, we must in candor say, that those of the Mormons are the most profane. Circumstances connected with travel, with occupations in a new house, and desultory life, may in part account for this; but when a people make pretensions to raising up a "holy generation," and are commanded to take wives for the purpose, we naturally look at the quality of the fruit produced by the doctrines; and surely, they should not complain of the Scripture rule, "By their fruits ye shall know them." -- Lieut. Gunnison.

Note: The above quotation occurs under the sub-title, "Effect of Plurality on the Young" in Chapter 8 of Gunnison's 1852 book, The Mormons.


ns Vol. I.                           Ravenna, Ohio, Wednesday, June 28, 1854.                           No. 13.


A new question is likely to arise in politics. "Shall the Mormons, with their polygamy, be admitted into the Union?" We wish to commit ourselves in advance, and say yes, certainly, to be sure, why not? We have thirteen States now, in which polygamy is practiced and provided for by law. We have an administration whose chief business it is to defend, spread, and perpetuate the institution. Now, we like variety, and as these thirteen States have all one kind of polygamy, and the Mormons another, we want the Salt Lake folks, to make up a collection. We have long been in national communion with a set of men who keep concubines and sell their children. We should like a specimen of those who educate and support all their offspring.

To our mind a plurality of wives is decent and proper compared to purchasing mistresses like sheep, as do our brethren of the South, or yet to licensing brothels and gaming and drinking houses, as do the "fathers" of our Eastern Cities.

While men are sole legislators they will always provide for their own vices, and we think the Mormons have taken by far the most decent course. The present members of this confederacy have not been and are not so very circumspect in their own morals that they need be very prudish about their company. Mrs. Swisshelm.

Notes: (forthcoming)


ns Vol. I.                           Ravenna, Ohio, Wednesday, July 19, 1854.                           No. 16.


The biography of the "Angel Gabriel" has been published in New York, from which we make the following extract of this eccentric character:

The name of this eccentric and peripatetic orator is [Saunders] McSwish. His fatehr was a native of Scotland... Embarking on board a Bristol vessel, he first landed at Jamaica in the West Indies... as the Baptist denomination was here more popular and numerous than his former sect, he left the Methodists and came out a deeply immersed Baptist. He left Jamaica and next started a dancing school in a small village, during which time he first heard of the flourishing Mormon settlement at Nauvoo, Illinois, and immediately determined to push his fortunes in that direction. He arrived in Philadelphia just at the period of the Native American excitement there, and concealing his origin... became the editor of a nativist paper. He gave up all idea of following Joe Smith, as a harvest here was already ripe for the reaper. He came to New York, had just money to purchase a brass horn, which he has continued to blow until his name has filled the earth...

Note: "Sandy" McSwish was evidently baptized a Mormon in McGrawsville, New York, in the mid-1850s. An 1884 biographical sketch includes this information: "Sandy was born on the Isle of Skye, Sept. 3, 1809. He was bound apprentice to a weaver. His father having died, his mother married a Baptist minister named Orr. Sandy joined a company of strolling players; afterwards was a Methodist preacher; and then came to America and joined the Mormons. After following various avocations, he finally began preaching in public places against popish authority and foreign influence. He had a horn or trumpet which he blew to attract an audience, hence the name "Gabriel."


The  Ohio  State  Journal.

Vol. XLIV.                        Columbus, Ohio, Wednesday, August 2, 1854.                        No. 51.

Effects  of  Polygamy  among  the
Mormon  Population.

As the Saints in Utah will shortly be applying for admission into the Uniom -- when the question whether they can be admitted with their "peculiar institution," will come up for decision -- we give an extract from a late work, to show how polygamy operates. It is from a work entitled "Utah and the Mormons," by Benj. G. Ferris, late Secretary of the Territory. Mr. Ferris is spoken of as a gentleman of strict veracity, and having resided a year in Utah, mixing with the people, his means of information are of the first order:

"The effect upon population is decidedly deleterious. The Prophet Joseph had over forty wives at Nauvoo, and the rest of the priesthood had various numbers, corresponding to their standing and inclinations; nearly all the children of these polygamous marriages died at that place; indeed it is alleged by Mormons that not one was taken to Utah. Brigham Young has thirty children, of whom eight are by his 1st and 2nd lawful wives; the remaining twenty-two are by his spirituals. He has about fifty wives, some of whom are widows of Joseph Smith, and are probably past the time of having children; but supposing him to have thirty who are capable of having issue -- which is below the true number -- the twenty-two children would be less than a child to a concubine. If each of these degraded females could have been the honored wife of one husband, the aggregate number of children, according to the usual average of four in a family, would be one hundred and twenty, showing a loss in population of ninety-eight.

"The children are subject to a frightful degree of sickness and mortality. This is the combined result of the gross sensuality of the parents and want of care towards their offspring. As a general rule, these saintly pretenders take as little care of their wives as of their children; and of both, less than a careful farmer in the States would of his cattle; and no where out of the 'Five Points,' in New York city, can a more filthy, miserable, neglected-looking, and disorderly rabble of children be found than in the streets of Great Salt Lake City. The Governor, again, whose attention to his multitudious family we are bound to suppose greater than the average, affords a fair illustration. He was twice lawfully married, and has had eight legitimate children, who are all living. He has had a large number of children by his concubines -- no one knows how many -- it is only known that there are only twenty-two surviving. These females do not reside in the 'Governor's House,' so called, but in different establishments, from one up to a dozen in a place."

Notes: (forthcoming)


ns Vol. I.                         Ravenna, Ohio, Wednesday, August 23, 1854.                         No. 21.


Among the news brought by the Pacific steamers, was the eleventh General Epistle of the Saints, Young, Kimball and Grant, Presidents of the Latter Day Church, to the Saints of the Earth -- the encyclical bull of the apostolic college at the head of that strange and formidable delusion, Mormonism.

The epistle has that character of combined shrewdness, impiety and boastfulness which has distinguished the proceedings of this body since its first appearance upon the stage, in Hancock county, Illinois. It congratulates the "Saints" on their abundant crops, the rapid augmentation of their numbers, and the progress of the fortifications by which they are fast rendering themselves impregnable from future assault.

It also specifies new and enlarged missionary operations, to be conducted under the auspices of their great apostle, Parley Pratt, who has been a very Francis Xavier or Christian Schwartz to the Mormons. Twenty young elders are about to be despatched to the Pacific Islands; and at the conference from which this epistle emanates, not less than sixty-five missionaries were commissioned. -- The missionary feature of Mormonism is not the least striking of its many pecularities.

From the beginning, it has constituted a steady and most profitable department of their undertakings, and has been more successful than is generally supposed. The fact that their population has increased in four years from four thousand to thirty, chiefly through emigration, shows that some active agencies must be at work to keep up such a steady supply....

With this vigor abroad, equal concentration and growth are kept up at home. Most of the emigrant converts are from the middling classes -- artisans, mechanics, and people possessed of considerable property. They are organized, as soon as they arrive, into one of the most compact and efficient despotisms ever known -- completely subject to the central power, and imbued with the spirit of enthusiastic obedience.

Every man capable of bearing arms is enrolled in the militia, and the apostles, prophets, patriarchs, bishops and elders of the church mingle military offices with their sacerdotal. They are understood to have now on foot a thoroughly drilled army of 8,000 -- but little short of the entire regular army of the United States.

While becoming thus formidable without, their inward corruptions and rottenness are rapidly on the increase. Like all evil men they have waxed worse and worse since the time of the blasphemous lies of Joseph Smith commenced their flow. Doctrines and practices once concealed from general knowledge, and restricted to the elders and leaders, have now become corner-stones of their edifice; and it is difficult to forcast where their shameless profligacy and blasphemy will end.

If we do not yet find trouble from this source, it will be very strange. Such a putrid sore cannot exist upon the extremest part of the body politic without peril. The depth of their crime but few readers understand. Polygamy is a prime article of their creed, and is carried to an extent that would put a Mahommedan to the blush.

President Young is said to be the husband of sixty wives; and this example every man follows to the extent of his inclination or ability. The confusion, sensuality and degradation which this is creating, have already become too offensive to be told; and as the system festers on, it will create a nuisance that will necessarily renew the scenes of extermination and violence of former years on a larger scale. -- N. Y. Evangelist, July 27.

To this statement, Mr. Weed in the Albany Journal makes the following addition, referring to the origin of the now fast spreading sect:

Twenty-eight years ago, "Jo Smith," the founder of this sect, and "Harris," his first convert, applied to the senior editor of The Journal, then residing at Rochester, to print his "Book of Mormon," then just transcribed from the "Golden Bible" which "Jo" had found in the cleft of a rock to which he had been guided by a vision.

We attempted to read the first chapter, but it seemed such unintelligible jargon that it was thrown aside. Jo. was a tavern-idler in the village of Palmyra. Harris, who offered to pay for the printing, was a substantial farmer. Disgusted with what we deemed a "weak invention" of an impostor, and not caring to strip Harris of his hard earnings, the proposition was declined.

The manuscript was then taken to another Printing-office across the street [sic], whence, in due time, the original "Mormon Bible" made its advent.

"Tall trees from little acorns grow."   

But who would have anticipated, from such a bald, shallow, senseless Imposition, such world-wide consequences? To remember and contrast Jo. Smith with the loafer-look, pretending to read from a miraculous slate-stone placed in his hat, with the Mormonism of the present day, awakens thoughts alike painful and mortifying. There is no limit, even in this most enlightened of all the ages of knowledge, to the imposture and credulity. If knaves, or even fools, invent creeds, nothing is too monstrous for belief. Nor does the fact -- a fact not denied or disguised -- that all the Mormon leaders are rascals as well as impostors, either open the eyes of their dupes or arrest the progress of delusion.

Note: A conflation of two articles -- one from the New York Evangelist of July 27th, and the other from the Albany Evening Journal of July 31st.


The  Ohio  State  Journal.

Vol. XLV.                 Columbus, Ohio, Wednesday, September 13, 1854.                 No. 5.

Mormonism: The Mormons.

The future historian, in writing the history of the 19th century, will have a curious chapter if he attempts to give the world the facts in relation to the rise, progress and destiny of the Mormons. We have no parallel to it for centuries. In this matter, truth, it may be safely said, is strange, stranger than fiction. Nothing in the line of romance is more strange, wild, and improbable, than the career of this deluded people. An ignorant, illiterate man in Western New York, with motives that are difficult, at this day, of solution, claimed to have found certain gold plates containing records of lost books of the Bible. By special grace, it was given to him to read and transcribe them. He published them to the world,and at once became the preacher of a new faith. The Mormon Bible was the light that guided his feet. he went abroad in the land. He soon found devotd followers, and in a short time Joe Smith became the founder of a new sect, the head of a new church. Rapidly increasing, they gathered together at Kirtland in the north part of Ohio, but soon after departed for the beautiful site of Nauvoo, on the east bank of the Mississippi, and about twelve miles above the city of Keokuk. This is one of the most charming places we have seen in the West; and the site of their famous Temple, on the high grounds, overlooking the Mississippi valley, for miles, is particularly beautiful.

The world is familiar with the history of their expulsion from Nauvoo. Grave charges were made against them, that they were dishonest and thievish, and that they harbored the desperate characters that once abounded on the Great Father of Waters. We are afraid that there was too much ground for this suspicion. The people of the surrounding country armed themselves; attacked the Mormons; killed the Prophet Joe, and his brother; and compelled the Mormons to leave for some new home in the wild, far West. They crossed the Mississippi, passed the vast prairies of Iowa, and located themselves temporarily at Kanesville, now the city of Council Bluffs. They resolved to emigrate to the Valley of the Great Salt Lake, in Utah, their present home, but they found themselves poor and destitute of the necessary food and cattle for such a journey. They found a charming valley on the Missouri, surrounded with timber in abundance, and with a vast body of dry, rich, and most productive bottom land, where corn and vegetables of all sorts would grow in the greatest profusion. They found also a vast and rich range for their cattle and horses. Here they resolved to tarry, till they could recruit their strength. They made Kanesville their temporary home. They cut down the fine timber, without stint, and made themselves a town of log houses. They made rails and fenced in and plowed up about a thousand acres of the rich bottom lands, where they planted corn, &c. They remained here for three years, at the end of which time their oxen and cows had increased, and their granaries had been so well filled, that they determined to cross the Missouri and take up their long line of march for the "Happy Valley." It is six years since the pioneers first arrived there. They have made wonderful progress in that time. They have a large population and have commenced a city that will be known hereafter as the "Great Salt Lake City" of Utah. Agriculture and the various branches of the mechanic arts are cultivated with much care....

Utah is the home of the Mormons. It is exclusively theirs. It has been incorporated as a territory of the United States. Brigham Young, the Mormon High Ptiest, has been appointed Governor. Other Mormons have been appointed Judges, &c. Very soon a Mormon State will be organized, and will apply for admission into the Union. It will be a question which the world will watch with some interest. The people both preach and practice polygamy. Young has thirty or forty wives. Hyde and Grant, and other leaders have their dozen wives. Every man has as many as he can support. The question must be met, whether a people that adopt this practice shall be admitted into the Union with a constitution recognizing these things.

During the early part of the present season we spent about two weeks at their old home in Council Bluffs, then Kanesville. Many of them are remaining there at this time, though they have no regular organization. We learned enough from those who had been there among them, to satisfy us that the leaders, Young, Hyde, & Co., are great hypocrites and profligates; while the masses of their followers are poor, ignorant, and deluded, but sincere men and women. Many of them soon saw behind the curtain, and had the good sense to quit them at an early day. Designing men, who wish to run a race of humbug and sensualism, of the most degrading character, join them, and find an inviting field for operations. It is impossible that these evils can long exist without producing the most deplorable results....

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. XXXII.                 Painesville, Ohio, Wednesday, October 11, 1854.                 No. 43.


Professor of the Eclectic Theory and Practice of Medicine,

Would respectfully inform the public that he has located at Kirtland, for the purpose of practicing his profession. He has for a long period enjoyed the benefit of a large practice, and has bestowed much attention upon chronic and nervous maladies, and for the last seven years has been laboring zealously in the field of Medical Reform. He has become satisfied from experience that the Eclectic plan of Medication (with the organic remedies) has many and great advantages over all other systems. He invites all who are sufferers from any disease that has resisted the ordinary means, to try his rational and scientific method of treating the sick.

He is prepared to attend to all calls at a distance. Patients wishing to remain with him can be accomodated with board and treatment on the most reasonable terms. The best of reference given.
  Kirtland, Sept. 4, 1854.

Note 1: Though the identity of the above advertised person has yet to be firmly established, there is reason to assume that he was D. P. Hurlbut (1809-1883) the infamous anti-Mormon statement-collector of 1833. See notes for the Oct. 18th issue of the Painesville Telegraph for a further discussion of this subject.

Note 2: For an earlier advertisement in a New York newspaper, which may have been placed by the same botanical physican, see the Auburn Free Press of Feb. 23, 1831.


Vol. X.                           Cleveland, Ohio, Thursday, October 12, 1854.                           No. 164.


A Rich Letter from a Mormon Elder -- Polygamy Discussed --
"The more Wives the more Glory."

City of the Great Salt Lake,      
September 1, 1854.      
J.W. Gray, Esq.:

"Now Mc., (Elder McKnight we should have said,) answer us these few plain but pointed interrogations, and we will lay your communication before our fifty thousand readers, all for the glory of God and the Church of the Latter Day Saints." -- Cleveland Weekly Plain Dealer, May 17, 1854.

While I commend the freedom of unaffected liberality, manifest in your notice, of which the above extract is the closing paragraph; there is yet an air of satire associated with it, that does not in my opinion comport with the spirit of true benevolence. And for this it is not difficult to account; and doubtless is owing in part to your opinion regarding the "Mormons," their customs, and religion. But however strange, unpopular, or even criminal and barbarous, our principles and practices may be, we presume to think ourselves human beings, with bodies and spirits, which united constitute living souls; and also that we are by our Creator endowed with an ordinary degree of common sense.

The doctrine of polygamy, as sustained by this people, does not universally obtain among Christians, a cordial reception. To the mass who have been trained in the school of modern Christianity, whether Protestant or Catholic, it is naturally repulsive; and this because of education and tradition. Whether it is more honorable -- for a man to have ten wives, publucly married, and publicly suported, or to have one wife, and a plurality of secret mistresses? Nor this alone. If these "mistresses" were his exclusively, it might seem less unpardonable -- but this is not the case -- and adultery most attrocious follows.

It were with some semblance of reason that our cotemporaries condemned polygamy in us, if their own odious system of whoredoms were abolished; but till then, it is worse than folly; for the beam in their eye is of such magnitude as to render it impossible to remove the mote from ours.

A few words explanatory. The first commandment given to Adam was, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it. Desirous to obey the commandments, we therefore adopt the most effective measures to increase our posterity. It is a received doctrine among us, that our children are our glory; therefore the more children, the more glory. You can easily perceive that we do not tolerate the custom that now generally prevails, of suppressing births; our custom is the contrary -- to use every facility to multiply them. We say to our friends in that lower world, You do not know the value of your mortal lives, or else you would strive to save, instead of destroy them.

We believe not only in multiplying bodies, but also in multiplying spirits to occupy bodies; -- and this is what we call eternal lives, or "eternal life," spoken of in the Scriptures. -- But this power is given only to those who have kept the laws of God on the earth, and received their exaltation, and been crowned as Gods, even the Sons of God. Thus is introduced a plurality of Gods also; for we believe, by obeying certain laws and ordinances, revealed from Heaven, we shall, -- that is those who strictly obey the laws and ordinances in all things, -- become Gods, even as our Father in heaven, who is the Father of our Spirits, not our bodies, -- and has had conferred upon him the power of eternal lives. I say _conferred upon him,) because the God we serve, the Father of our Spirits, received his exaltation as God, by obeying the very laws and ordinances which are revealed to us; and if this be true, then by following in his footsteps, we shall become like him.

Do you believe that the Almighty God, maker of heaven and earth, ever lived on our earth like this, and was subject to sanity and sin as we are? You do not; but it is nevertheless true. He was born into a world, as we are, received a Spirit from his Heavenly Father, kept his commandments, and entered into his glory, which is a celestial glory; which consists in the power of propagating our species in spirit. There are three different glories. The power of propagating is one glory, which is called terrestial. The power of propagating Spirits for those tabernacles is another glory, which is called celestial. And God has dominion over them all, and therein continues his works.

God our Father in heaven was once a man, like us in all things; but having become exalted through obedience, He has overcome all things, and attained unto the knowledge, power, glory, dominion, and majecty, which he holds forever and ever, for he has proved himself worthy; therefore he is not subject to sin, but controls sin and satan. But his form is not changed; it remains the same; and being our Father, it is quite natural that we should somewhat resemble him in our image and species. We are created for his glory. The power of multiplying was implanted in us by our Father, even as He possessed the same power; and we will continue to multiply and replenish the earth until the measure of its creation is full. Though we may become Gods, we are still the sons of God, and work for His glory. And though all ours is his, his is ours and our own glory is not diminished in the least.

Now we believe, because our God has passed through all the ordinances, kept all the laws, and received all the degrees unto celestial glory, that He is abundantly qualified to direct his children to that glory, if they will keep his commandments. And He has commanded us, among other things, as we most assuredly believe, -- to take unto ourselves wives, if we would partake of his glory; even as He commanded servants in ancient times. But those who do not keep his commandments cannot enter into his glory. I ask, what is the fullness of his glory? First, it is the power of multiplying Spirits. Second of creating worlds. And third of multiplying tabernacles or bodies for those spirits to dwell in, to inhabit those worlds; and giving laws whereby they are governed. This constitutes the fullness of the glory of God. Does not such employment seem worthy an exalted intelligence?

It is unto this power or glory that we seek to attain; and it is by the fruit of our own loins, following in the footsteps of our God, that we are enabled to enter upon this work in eternal worlds. So we marry our wives for time and for all eternity. Thus each man's posterity in this world constitutes the basis of his future kingdom; and the power and glory of his kingdom will be proportionate to the number of his posterity. Therefore, the more wives a man has, the more numerous his posterity will be. The great blessing that Jehovah guaranteed to Abraham was, that his seed should be as the sands of the sea-shore for number; and God could confer upon him no greater.

I will tell you a mystery. Your marriages, effected by priests and magistrates, are not binding after death. But those sealed by the power of the Eternal Priesthood, are of full force after men are dead; because whatsoever is sealed by this power on earth, is also sealed eternally in the heavens, &c. Man is an eternal being, and if obedient to the laws of his God, his progress and increase will be eternal.

As to myself, I have as yet married but two. This is a small beginning, but the day of small things must not be despised. You may believe however, having myself but two wives, while the majority around me have more, that I feel somewhat slim; but wait awhile. Your "women worshippers" in the State ("of sin and misery," as you remark,) I trow, would scarcely be willing, even if she had the privilege -- to choose "wife No. 2," who should share their husband's time, affection, &c. But here it often happens that women court for their husbands -- and you know they understand the art, and of course are very successful. So all the men have to do is to invent means of supporting them.

What think you? Our young ladies, accomplished and beautiful, often choose a man with ten, or twenty, or forty wives, in preference to an attractive young gentleman who has not one; -- thus showing their good taste, and regard for age and experience. If one of your most polite, fashionable, and fascinating young gentlemen should come here, he would find it very difficult to get a wife; and if he succeeded at all, she would probably be one whom our grey-headed and infirm old men would refuse.

As to "ministerial modesty," I have a faint recollection of the term and of its signification; but indeed I had almost forgotten it, and assure you that among us it has become obsolete; and in our "Latest Edition of the English Lexicon," it is omitted. We talk Mormon-English, which allows us to speak freely, but there is now and then a "modest" person in our assembly, who has sometimes occasion to "go out."

But you will not fail to see that we lay no small stress upon our peculiar doctrine, polygamy -- and it is therefore a matter of solicitude with every man, to preserve peace among his wives. It is true, as you say, "with but one wife, it is difficult for some people in the States to live amicably." But when you consider that it is the desire of every woman to have a numerous progeny, and her husband to have many wives, on the ground that their glory is enhanced thereby, here is a powerful incentive to order and union. Besides, it is the Mormon belief that the husband is the head of the wife, and her Lord and Savior, and unless she is obedient and submissive to him, she cannot be saved; here is another consideration that vastly tends to cement the husband and his wives. There are other influences that operate in the same channel -- all of which conduce so effectually to subdue the self-will and waywardness of women, that I will venture there is more humanity here, in the family of a man who has ten wives, than in the mass of families elsewhere, where one wife presides, -- mistress of the house, husband, and children.

There are instances of from six to ten wives inhabiting one dwelling, and live amicably; though for the most part, each wife has her own house and rules her own children. The children are under the mother's care, until they arrive at maturity, or at an age when the father needs their service.

With regard to President Brigham Young: He governs his family, numerous though it be, in a manner worthy of imitation, and is our "model man" in this as in all other respects; and would that the whole world would receive him as their "model," and follow his example and counsel. With his wives he marks the conduct of a man of God, availing himself of the right to take whomsoever he pleases, and give likewise. His wives, like other women, dress according to their own taste -- "bloomer" if they please; and every one is respected according to her integrity and virtue, without partiality or hypocrisy. However, partaking of his spirit, President Young's wives are worthy examples to their sex throughout Christendom, of purity and intelligence.

"The babies" are properly cared for, you may be assured; for esteeming our children, our glory, I need scarcely say, that no pains are spared to increase their number, and bring them up to the truths which their parents cherish. And we have a mighty host of "babies" growing up in these calleys, who will soon enter upon the work begun by their fathers, and accomplish such things as have never been accomplished since the world began.

In these mountains we have settled to support wholesome laws and institutions; to suppress every evil. And when this city, or all the cities of Utah combined, have sixteen thousand prostitutes in them, as has the single city of New York, may Utah be overwhelmed by the desolations of the Almighty. Such abominations cannot exist here; for we have our watchmen stationed in every corner, and when they are discovered, I assure you, we do not trouble the City Council, or the United States Court, to suppress them.

There are other matters of which I would write, but shall defer so doing at present. -- But little is known in truth of the "Mormons," though writers often attempt description.

I am happy to learn, that the "Plain Dealer" has such extensive patronage; and consider the conduct which has marked its course for the past ten years, well deserves the confidence, and support of an honorable community.

I wish you, sir, all the prosperity that your just and liberal course may merit.
JAS. McKNIGHT.      

Note: James McKnight (1828-1906) worked as a printer on the Milwaukee Weekly Wisconsin before finding the same employment, briefly, with the Plain Dealer in the first months of the 1850s. He was evidently baptized a Mormon in 1851 and soon afterward migrated to Great Salt Lake City. There he obtained a printer's position with the Deseret News and became the foreman of that organization's printing department in 1854. He was made the territorial printer in 1857 and subsequently worked occasionally in the News editorial department as a writer and reporter. He wrote numerous letters to editors of newspapers, defending Mormonism -- an activity which came to an end following his 1875 excommunication from the LDS Church. See the on-line feature, "James McKnight: Mormon Advocate" for more details.



Vol. XXXII.                 Painesville, Ohio, Wednesday, October 18, 1854.                 No. 44.


On the 15th at Kirtland, by mutual consent, PHILETUS S. BLACKMON, of Painesville, and Miss JULIA HULBURT, of the former place.

==> The result of the election has sadly disgusted the editor of the Plain Dealer with politics. He offers to give away his Rooster, and in his paper of the 12th favors his readers with a column and a half of argument in favor of the Mormon doctrine of Plurality of Wives...

Note 1: The 1854 union between Mr. Philetus S. Blackmon and Miss Julia Hurlbut was given more detailed publicity in a contemporary article (probably reprinted from a late Oct. Cleveland paper) published in the Nov. 1, 1854 issue of the Rochester Daily American:  "SPIRITUAL MARRIAGE. -- A man by the name of P. S. Blackman, of Painesville, and a young lady by the name of Julia Hurlburt, daughter of Dr. Hurlburt, of Kirtland, were spiritually married at the latter place on Sunday, Oct. 15. The ceremony consisted of matrimonial declarations made by themselves in the presence of friends, about fifty being present. The services consisted of the following poetical announcement: -- 'Have you seen the morning kiss the opening blossom? Thus did our spirits meet and at the first interview; and as the inevitable elements of nature unite and blend in one harmonious impulse; so are our spirits [affinitized] into one accordant living force. Whoever are thus united by the eternal laws of affinity, naught has authority to separate. We thus introduce ourselves unto you in the relation of husband and wife.'"

Note 2: The "Dr. Hurlburt" (or "Hulburt") referred to in the Rochester news item was the same person who advertised his newly established Kirtland botanical medical practice in the Telegraph of Oct. 11th. It appears likely that he was D. Philastus Hurlbut, the infamous anti-Mormon researcher who contributed so much source material to E. D. Howe's 1834 Mormonism Unvailed. D. P. Hurlbut married Maria Woodbury in 1834 and they eventually settled at Gibsonburg, Sandusky Co., Ohio. The couple's family appears on the 1850 Federal Census report for that place. However, the 1860 census shows D. P. Hurlbut living at Gibsonburg with another lady named "Diana" and with several children who were not products of his marriage with Maria Woodbury. It appears that Hurlbut temporarily left Sandusky Co. and returned to his old haunts around Kirtland, in 1853-54, after he was ejected from his position as a minister in the Sandusky Conference of the United Brethren church. Whether his new consort was from Gibsonburg or had all the time been living in Kirtland remains unclear, but it is likely that she was an early Ohio convert to Spiritualism and that the "fifty present" at her daughter's "wedding" were residents of Geauga and Lake counties -- perhaps mostly Diana's old friends. Julia may have been Diana's child by a previous association, or she may have been D. P. Hurlbut's actual daughter, born prior to his union with Maria Woodbury. A "Julia Hurlbut" married George Hall near Kirtland on Oct. 22, 1845. If Hurlbut's daughter Julia was already married, that small fact would not have prevented her from entering into extra-legal "spiritual wifery" with Mr. Philetus Swift Blackmon, late of Farmersville, Cattaraugus Co., New York. Although the union produced at least three children, it was evidently never recorded at the Lake County court house, an indication that it was not licensed, as would have been the case for a regular Spiritualist or Swedenborgian wedding

Note 3: If the 1854 Kirtland "Doctor" was indeed D. P. Hurlbut, he did not remain for very long in the Kirtland area. In their 1908 History of Kane County, Ill., R. Wait Joslyn and Frank W. Joslyn give passing mention to "Drs. D. Hurlbut and P. S. Blackman" having "settled in Aurora in the fall of 1858, for a stay of several months..." (vol. I p. 527). This information was likely derived from an 1858 newspaper advertisement for the two "doctors'" practice in northeastern Illinois. By 1860 D. P. Hurlbut again living at Gibsonburg, maintaining a household with Diana and their several little ones. The couple were then Spiritualists, along with at least one of D. P. Hurlbut's older children. In 1867 his daughter Phoebe married Leander Franklin and went to live on his farm near the hamlet of Rollersville, which lies about four miles southwest of Gibsonburg. Later that same year, D. P. Hurlbut was chosen as Rollersville's delegate to Ohio's first annual Spiritualist convention. Mr. Hurlbut's old associate, Eber D. Howe, attended as the Spiritualist delegate from Painesville.

Note 4: D. P. Hurlbut's reported early life in Penn-Yan, New York may receive some support from the fact that the Rochester Daily American's news item, on his daughter's marriage, was picked up and printed in abbreviated form by the Penn-Yan Yates County Whig. This reprint appeared on Nov. 9, 1854. For an earlier advertisement in a Penn-Yan area newspaper, which may have been placed by this same botanical physican, see the Auburn Free Press of Feb. 23, 1831.



Vol. XXXII.                 Painesville, Ohio, Wednesday, October 25, 1854.                 No. 45.


MELANCHOLY. -- Mr. Joseph Coe, of Kirtland, was killed on Tuesday of last week, in the following shocking manner. He went into his field in the afternoon for the purpose of catching his Bull, which he had frequently done, and being absent unusually long, search was made for him, when his body was found mangled in a shocking manner. It appeared that the animal had thrown Mr. Coe to the ground and jumped upon his breast, which doubtless caused his death almost instantly. His clothes were nearly stripped from his body, and his flesh, in many places, torn off.

Mr. C was in the 70th years of his age. He leaves a wife and four children.

Note 1: This same notice also appeared in a late Oct. issue of the Willoughby Independent.

Note 2: Joseph Coe (1784-1854) was an 1830 New York convert to Mormonism. He was a member of the 1831 Mormon expedition to Jackson Co., Missouri, to dedicate the new "Zion." In Kirtland Coe became a member of first Mormon High Council and was one of the elders who helped lay the cornerstones of the Temple. After joining the dissenting party of Latter Day Saints, he was excommunicated by Joseph Smith loyalists at the end of 1837 (see also, the William R. Coe collection of Mormon documents in the Beinecke Library of Yale University).


Vol. 40.                             Canton, Ohio, Nov. 1, 1854.                             No. 29.


UTAH. -- The Utah News congratulates the Mormons upon the passage of the Kansas-Nebraska bill, for it indicates that the majority in Congress are willing to allow inhabitants of Territories the same privilege in regulating their internal policy as are allowed to those who live in the States.

The correspondence of the Missionaries scattered over the world occupies much space in the News, and it is astonishing how Mormon Apostles have gone into every part of the habitable glove, making converts. Elder Jessee Haven writes from Cape Town, Cape of Good Hope, and says:

"Many of the women here, as in many other places would like to join the Latter Day Saints if they had a plurality of husbands, or men, instead of plurality of wives."

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. 40.                             Canton, Ohio, Nov. 8, 1854.                             No. 30.


The famous Brigham Young, the Governor of Utah, and Grand High Priest of the Mormons, came near having an inglorious end put to his career, in August last. He went down into his well to recover a lost bucket, when the kerbing tumbled in, the earth followed, and Brigham Young became, for the once, a subterranean Saint. But the zeal of his followers would not permit any such finish to the life of their most faithful shepherd. Spades and shovels were brought into requisition; the harem of the buried Governor assembled in force to aid the saving efforts of the male members of the flock, and, in about two hours, they had the gratification of pulling him out, like a forked radish, from his sub-soil bed. He preached that night from the text -- "It is well with me."

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. X.                             Cleveland, Ohio, Wednesday, Nov. 22, 1854.                             No. 198.


History of its Dawn, Ride & Progress.



Mahomet, Joe Smith and Sidney Rigdon.


HIRAM, Portage Co., O.,     
Nov. 12, 1854.      
Editors Plain Dealer: -- The name of the township of Hiram, written above, can scarcely attract the attention of any reader of the Plain Dealer. Nevertheless, it was some years since the theatre of incipient and actual events which may be considered the first of a long series of others of like character, which have now terminated in the establishment of a peculiarly organized Territory which soon is to be received as one of the States of the American Republic.

Hiram is 34 miles eastward from Cleveland. -- The central part, comprising an area of three or four square miles, rises gently and somewhat majestically above the surrounding country. Upon one side and deep below the Cutahoga river rolls its sluggish waters towards Lake Erie, and upon the other side, through fertile, distant, and dimly descried vallies, the sparkling tributaries of the Ohio leap forward upon the long journey to the Gulf of Mexico. Upon the eastern edge of the promontory, so to speak, in the midst of a sea of villages and farms, stands the village centre. It is said that hence one may behold the borders of Pennsylvania, 40 miles to the east; and it is certain that by night one may behold, at a great distance, the fires of the furnaces at Briar Hill, streaming against the horizon. Here the Campbellites, or Disciples, as they prefer to be called, have erected a fine seminary, and impart to their youth the rudiments of science.

But it is another part of the hill to which attention is more particularly directed. Let one figure to himself a large two-story frame house with numerous out-houses on one side, an elegant fence and yard in front, which with the dwelling is of a dazzling white; an orchard adjoining, covering ten or fifteen acres of ground, and attached to this, an extensive farm in the highest state of cultivation; not a stone to dull the mower's scythe, not a rod of fence neglected whereby the well-fed herds may be tempted to rove beyond their bounds. Let, too, the lover of fine scenery turn from this mansion to the west. Far below, stretching north and south, lies the fertile valley of the Cuyahoga, and beyond it, at one view, he sees half the farms of Mantua arising one beyond another. Upon the south a deep gorge breaks away towards the east and spreads out into the countless vallies of the Mahoning.

It is now about twenty-five years since Elder Joseph Smith came from Palmyra, N.Y., "his own country," to this identical Hiram. He succeeded in making a convert of the owner of the farm mentioned above, whose name was Johnson, a worthy man, a good farmer, and who, from his family connections and other qualities, possessed a great deal of influence. What induced “JO SMITH,” as he is usually called, to select this place for the commencement of operations, it would be difficult to determine; but could we see into the depths of his capacious and ambitious soul, we would undoubtedly behold there prefigured the image of a magnificent temple of the Lord, standing upon that unrivalled site, and remaining for ages to come as the centre of the Church of the Latter Day Saints, gathered from the ends of the earth. The site, therefore, may be considered to have been the principal reason for selecting this locality.

Smith was a tall, muscular and powerful man. His complexion was light, his features some what agreeable, though not indicating to the common observer any shining quality of mind. He would pass among strangers as a shrewd farmer of the better class. He was, however, possessed of sound judgment, and in ordinary business showed great tact and penetration. -- Elder Smith resembles no remarkable man in history so much as Mahomet. Both were born in humble life, both first made converts of their own families, both gave new revelations to mankind, both allowed a plurality of wives, and both were successful. It is remarkable, however, that he who was surrounded by the descendants of Ishmael, the name of whose whole nation is synonymous with cruelty and blood should live to a good old age and expire peacefully in the midst of his family -- while he, the other, living in the land of Christians, under the reign of the Prince of Peace, or as our friends love to say, "in a land of Bibles," and in the midst of a people which has accepted of the choicest gift the Creator has to bestow, should here, on these very heights first be threatened with an ignominious death; and afterwards, in another part of this favored land be murdered -- not secretly, by poison or assassination, but in open day, in a public prison, by an infuriated mob.

There is one other consideration in the character of Elder Smith which deserves notice. -- He was an uneducated man. His mind had never been disciplined by study. He could only reason by intuition, and though by his sagacity he was often right, yet, from his want of knowledge, he was as often wrong. It must be confessed that our system of education is erroneous which permits a mind like that of Smith's to mature in ignorance, or what is worse, with a little learning, and that little wrong.

Sidney Rigdon became associated with Smith, also some common men took up preaching, who without moving away still continue the calling with some modifications of doctrine. A system of proselytism was entered upon in the town itself, "commencing" as it were "at Jerusalem," and with a success that even at this late period reminds one of the day of Pentecost. Men, women and children were baptized in great numbers; some even at a late hour of the night, and in the dead of winter, were immersed upon the enquiry "Who hindereth?" The reformation proceeding thus rapidly, steps were about to be taken for the erection of a temple and for the building of a city on this new Moriah. But the "best laid schemes of mice and men gang aft aglee," and the erection of a temple at Hiram or anything similar, was deferred at least, to our own degenerate days.

Some young, as well as elderly men, who were afterwards pretty well known, took it upon themselves to put an end to this new religion and to these bright anticipations. They banded together in secret, and from time to time threw out threats of vengeance against the Mormons. Smith being advised of their preparations, went armed, slept with pistols under his pillows and defied the minions of Satan. -- A time arrived when one of his children was taken sick, and for some days lay at the point of death, indeed it did afterwards die. He attended his child night and day, until at last it was supposed to be better. Smith then retired for a few hours' repose and sank into a profound slumber. There were those waiting and watching for this event, and communicated to the rest of their gang that the hour had come. After the dead hour of night a large company with disfigured faces broke suddenly into the house. With a club they struck Mr. Johnson on the head and he fell senseless. They then burst into a room where a lady, the wife of a preacher lay sleeping, but discovering their mistake, dashed into the room [where] Smith yet slumbered. It is said that two seized him by the hands, two by the legs, and one by his hair. -- With one jerk, he was brought into the middle of the room, and the next moment was dragged into the road.

The next morning revealed that all which might be done with tar and feathers in supplying the place of law or of argument, had there been done. Rigdon was treated in the same manner, and perhaps some other preachers -- Smith asserted that had he not been weary, this event would not have happened. It is highly probable that had he been apprised of their approach more than one would have fallen dead at his feet.

It may be granted, possibly, to a low order of minds, that there are evils so difficult to eradicate that a remedy of this kind may be applied, but where it is necessary to make the application upon a subject who has rendered himself incapable of self-defence by administering to the wants or pleasures of a dying child -- a child which only recognizes a father's care, and its mother's tenderness, it can scarcely fail to appear that the actors in this scene were both ignorant and tyranical, and that they may ever afterwards, with such exceptions as repentance might make, be considered attached to this style of religious argument.

A short time afterwards, as Rigdon was sleeping, with his family, in a log house nearly opposite Johnson's, they were aroused by a most terrific explosion. It appeared that some one had bored a hole with a two inch auger in the large log opposite the head of the bed, filled it with powder and fired it off. The log was split in two pieces, and one side of the house laid open to the night air.

By this time the Mormons thought it best to "shake the dust of Hiram from their feet." It was evident that they must almost literally

    "Fight their way thro' bloody seas."

They retired to Kirtland, where they built that magnificent temple and laid still stronger foundations for their remarkable success. Afterwards they moved to Missouri and Illinois, and finally to the Salt Lake country, Utah Territory, and are, at this time increasing more rapidly than ever.

It was a long time before the township of Hiram recovered from the odium attached to the persecution of the Mormons. It was concluded that where so little liberality was obtained, little else could be found that was valuable

Note 1: Due to the unusual length of the above article (and for easier reading), some of its sections are hidden. Use a web browser's "view page source" function to read the entire piece, with all its flowery 19th century literary additions.

Note 2: It appears reasonably evident that Lucius V. Bierce, in his c. 1860 Unpublished History of the Western Reserve, borrowed a few facts from the account published in the 1854 Plain Dealer. Bierce's parallel story (of the Smith-Rigdon tar and feathering, etc.) may have been developed indirectly, however. There remains a possibility that both Bierce and the anonymous 1854 writer gained some of their historical material from the recollections of old Hiram residents, such as John Tilden and members of the extended Johnson family. Tilden may have briefly been a Mormon convert (see note 4 below).

Note 3: The Plain Dealer writer says that threats made against Joseph Smith prior to the March 25, 1832 tar and feathering incident, caused him to take the precaution of being "armed," so that he "slept with pistols under his pillows." This description of events agrees with other reliable reports and provides the view that Smith was not entirely unaware of the dangers he faced at the time. The writer mentions that "Rigdon was treated in the same manner," and then goes on to say "A short time afterwards, as Rigdon was sleeping, with his family, in a log house nearly opposite Johnson's, they were aroused by a most terrific explosion." This appears to be a particularly veritable recollection -- to the point of properly locating Rigdon's residence on the Johnson farm at Hiram (a detail only an eyewitness could have initially supplied). It is both interesting and convincing, that the writer places the Rigdon cabin explosion after the tar and feathers event. This sequence of events makes more sense than does the prospect of Sidney Rigdon sleeping soundly in an already damaged cabin. It may also explain why Rigdon quickly departed Hiram, never to return. Smith, on the other hand, eventually came back to the relatively secure Johnson house and lived there for several more weeks in 1832 -- when the habitually nervous Rigdon chose instead to reside in the safety supplied by the Mormons at Kirtland.

Note 4: The 1854 account stands as the earliest known mention of a Mormon temple planned for the hilltop at Hiram. The writer makes an apt comparison of that hill with Jerusalem's "Moriah," and presents a compelling reason for the unfinished (even un-begun) Hiram Temple building project. See also the Portage County Democrat of Feb. 15, 1860. -- The Woodstock Universalist Watchman of Aug. 13, 1831 did not mention any temple plans, but it offered this relevant report: "Several people went from here [Hiram] out of curiosity to see them [Smith & Rigdon]; they were deluded by the prophet Jo, and became dupes to one of the greatest impositions ever practiced among mankind. Finally Jo Smith, and several inferior prophets came to Hiram and Nelson, where they have succeeded in making proselytes to the amount of one hundred, among which are the two Priests & Booth -- Carnot Mason, Rider and all the Pitkin family from Hartford Vermont. John Johnson, and all his family from Pomfret Vt. Charles Raymond, Aruna & John Tilden, S. R. Parker, T. Brace, all the Hewlits, ten or fifteen in number, P. Alleyn & family, and all the fools in this Country."


Vol. X.                             Cleveland, Ohio, Friday, Dec. 8, 1854.                             No. 112.

The Mormons  and  the Plain Dealer --
A  Message  from  the Prophet Strang.

We have received a letter from James J. Strang, the acknowledged head of the Mormon community on Beaver Island, complaining of the Dealer's course generally towards his people, and particularly in reference to an article extracted from the Buffalo Republic, published as a rumor, charging the Mormons of that Island with massacreing a vessel's crew, &c. Now if in anything we pride ourselves, it is in letting people's religious opinions alone and persecuting no sect for a belief which we are bound in charity to suppose they cannot help. We do, however, when the Church, or any portion of it, assume to dabble in our trade -- i.e. politics -- make no bones of telling them, they are not only wrong, but very much out of place. When we saw a political party, like the Whigs in 1852, courting and cajoling the Catholics as such, we denounced the attempted collusion and did what we could to counteract it... It is only against the immorality of such that we war. Governed by no creed, belonging to no church and bound to swear in the words of no man, we are at liberty to denounce the fault of all when they come within our legitimate reach.

Mr. Strang says:

"The Mormons do not owe the Democratic party anything. They have never received a favor from them in this State. Whenever they have received mere justice, they have literally forced it inch by inch. Yet we are accused of selling ourselves 'neck and heels' to that party, and that accusation, now generally credited, originated in the Plain Dealer in October, 1850. It has already cost us in imprisonment and escaping mobs the time of one hundred men an entire summer, and in defending Government prosecutions $10,000."

We make this extract to publicly set ourself right, and to rebuke the Democrats in Michigan, if the charge as against them be true.

We do not remember and we can see no motive in our charging such a crime to the Mormons. The Prophet must be mistaken. It would be a very natural charge for a Whig paper to make, whether true or false, but it would be wicked in us to make the charge if not true, and silly in us to do so if it was...

Now, Mr. Strang, we intend to advocate the admission of Utah without stopping to enquire whether the Territory is inhabited by Mormons or Methodists, or whether the men have five wives or one... No, Mr. Strang, mark us down as a brother, not of the Church, but of the human family, and one, so far as your religious opinions are concerned, who cares not a fig whether you are really a Prophet of the Most High, or not; or whether you believe that the whale swallowed Jonah or Jonah the whale.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Cincinnati  Daily  Columbian.
Vol. ?                             Cincinnati, Ohio,  January 6, 1855.                                   No. ?


Mr. Editor: I have just noticed in the Columbian an article headed "Mormonism Villified," -- and signed by Orson Spencer, in which the writer seems much annoyed at an article as previously published in your paper, designed, mainly, as a hint and timely warning to the Salt Lake Mormons, who are preaching polygamy among us. Now, sir, as you, in answer to this Mormon prelate's inquisitorial demands, have DRAGGED me out of my hiding place by informing this refined apostle of polygamy that the NAME of the "man whose heart is steeped in the gall of fiendish calumny," has not been withheld, as he supposed, from the above-mentioned article, I deem anything more on this head unnecessary. However, as he seems to think that the article in question is aimed at himself, whether from a sense of guilt, or whatever cause, I would inform him that the paragraph he has quoted, does not particularize the Salt Lake Delegation in this city any more than that in any other.

The "sentence which reads one now among us," is intended to signify not this city alone, but the whole country this side the territory of Utah. But would this very christian writer, wish the public to understand that he is not preaching polygamy in this city, and that they are not asking for subscriptions to their newly contemplated vehicle of Brigamism, to be called "The Mormon."

This man seems really to go into fits about something said in the article concerning, advocating the wholesale murder of some harmless people at Salt Lake, and to exonerate himself from suspicion in the matter, very modestly tells us, that he was some thousands of miles from the scene alluded to. What scene? how did Mr. Spencer know anything about that scene? He says he is assured the murder of innocent persons was not advocated by any Mormon at Salt Lake; but who does he call innocent? certainly not Gladden Bishop, or those who have confidence in him as a man of God; who, with him stand up against vice in every shape, and for which he expects to suffer, by the hands of such men as use the following language. "Now you Gladdenites keep your tongues still, lest sudden destruction comes upon you." "I say to you, Bishops, do not allow them to preach in your wards." "Kick these men out of your wards." "I say, rather than that apostates shall flourish here, I will unsheath my bowie knife and conqueror die." "Now, you nasty apostates, clear out, or judgment will be put to the line, and righteousness to the plummet. "We have the tools to work with."

The above are extracts from the speech of Brigham Young, the President of the Church of the Latter Day Saints, as delivered at Salt Lake city, and published in the 10th No., Vol. 3d, of their paper, called the Deseret News. Now, sir, is not this liberty of speech with a vengeance? How far short does this come of advocating the wholesale murder of the people, whom the speaker is pleased to call apostates? -- Will, or dare any man say that several of the leading men of Salt Lake, did not publicly advocate the utter extermination of the people alluded to above? And, as a consequence, their meetings were broken up by mobs, and one man by the name of Smith, was arrested for the dreadful crime of preaching in the street. For what cause have some nine families of this people left Salt Lake, who owned property, and wished to stay there, but left under distressing circumstances, and are now at Council Bluffs city, Iowa? Is it a difficult matter to trace the cause to such speeches as this of Brigham Young?

The sound of murder startles the guilty; the man of blood often seeks to hide himself under the guise of the mild religion of Jesus; and protests, of course, his innocence, even while his hands are reaking with blood. I have not, in that article, which haa proved such a destructive fire-brand to vice and crime, in high places, implicated any one particular person, and neither have I advocated the persecution of any people, or persons; for no person can be more against the spirit of intolerance than myself. Does this man really think the intelligent public is so much fascinated with the doctrine of polygamy, that TRUTH, in a public journal, will insult them, to such a degree that they would wish to "gaze upon the serpentine villain" who has dared to lift his pen against wickedness in high places? You are gravely told, sir, that your paper contains implications of crime against what he terms the Salt Lake Delegation, (by the by, a singular term for preachers,) and the highest crimes known to our laws. Now sir, upon reviewing that paper, I must acknowledge, that except polygamy, which, in every State is bigamy, which is a penitentiary crime, I can see nothing to sustain his charge against your paper.

He speaks of the Melodeon Hall, and denies that anything is received by subscription to remunerate the Elders in the city, but he does not tell us how the ten dollars per day is obtained for the use of the hail. He has not told us that his little congregation, of perhaps, some thirty members, most of whom can scarcely obtain a subsistance, are obliged to save out of their scanty earnings sufficient to pay for the use of this hall. He, perhaps, has not heard them complaining of the iron yoke which galls them. Cincinnatians are not, perhaps, so easily tempted with the bait of a fine hall, as some western folks might imagine, and a little more tightening of the screws, upon the little flock, and the Salt Lake Delegation may find a cause for the growing prosperity of the branch of the New Church in our city, and why so many of their best members are leaving them. I will add a few extracts of a letter written by a very worthy gentleman, by the name of Swett, (lately from Salt Lake,) who says his life was threatened in that country by several persons, for the high crime of dissenting from them in matters of religious faith:

COUNCIL BLUFF CITY, Nov. 4, 1854.      
DEAR BROTHER: -- I will attempt to write some of my feelings, as I may be led at this time. "I found peace in believing, but lo, to my astonishment opposition arose in a most violent manner, even in my own family," "She, (his wife,) attended the meeting where Gov. Young made his speech denouncing the Gladdenites, and threatened destruction to them all." "He, (Gov. Young,) told her that she was free from me, and that she need not live with me another day; unless she chose. She therefore packed up her things and left." At the Conference on the 6th of April, there were many inflammatory speeches by others of the authorities, "so that they (the people) were led to believe that it would be doing God service to destroy them off from the face of the earth." "They were thirsting for the blood of those that dared to stand up for the truth." "I found in the meanwhile; that three different men had threatened my life, and laid their plans accordingly; but as the Lord would have it, they did not succeed; but judge of my astonishment, to behold a people calling themselves Saints, threatening with death, all those that saw fit to differ from them in matters of religion." "Any man that could not swallow down all they gave them were considered apostates, and not counted worthy to live. They even advocated publicly, the principle of killing men to save them, and if any dared to question their right to do such things, they would be told with an oath, to keep their tongues still, or they should share the same fate," When I see their hostile feelings against the United States, and everybody that dare to speak against any of their proeeedings, and when I see them place such implicit confidence in their leader, Brigham Young; calling him their god, and he setting himself up as God, and counting all that was written aforetime as a mere fable, and his word to be law and gospel to them, and when I see the schemes and cunning plans laid, as I believe, for the aggrandisement of the few among the many, also, the eagerness that men have to get many wives, these, with many other things, lead me to the solemn conviction, that they, as a people, are well nigh fitted for destruction. Yet, there are many among them that are good people whom I love."

In conclusion, sir, I wish still to say that I wish no people harm: if they are bad, I only wish to see them reformed. But, sir, for corruption and crime I have no countenance. As a true American, I, with tens of thousands of others, set my face as a flint against all wickedness in high places, whether in politics or religion. And, sir, when I see that people, among whom I once stood (in the language of the prophet,) purged from all iniquity, I shall rejoice to stand among them again, as the beloved people of the Lord. Now, sir, if the Salt Lake Delegation wish to make themselves still more conspicuous by their threatening attitude, we would inform them that we have but merely begun to introduce the testimony we have at command.
JAMES W. PUGH.         
CINCINNATI, Jan. 5, 1855.

Notes: (forthcoming)


ns. Vol. I.                          Columbus, Ohio, Friday,  January 26, 1855.                                 No. 211.

Exposure  of  the  Mormons --  Letter  from
one  of  President  Young's  Wives.

Chicago, Jan. 16, 1855.        
Editor Boston Daily Times -- Allow me to trouble you with these few lines which I wish you to insert in your Daily Times. My object is this; I have been for the last ten years a firm believer in the doctrine of the Latter Day Saints, or rather, Mormonism. My parents became followers of the celebrated Joe Smith in an early day, and emigrated to Nauvoo. After the death of Smith and his brother we were driven from thence. The society split. There were two who wished to take their leader's place, and stand at the head of the Church, but could not agree. Therefore they separated. Col. Wight and his followers, that is, such as believed in him, went to Texas, and are living in peace and prosperity. Col. W. is a worthy man compared with our great, or rather notorious, Brigham Young, notwithstanding he has been for the last three years my lawful husband -- that is, according to their own laws and rules. But for the last twelve months I have seen enough to satisfy me; for what I don't know about Mormonism is not worth knowing. They have secret plots and objects that they mean to accomplish. They censure the Government for not protecting them in all their hellish works. For all thIs they mean to have satisfaction. My object. in writing this is to warn my female friends to beware of the false prophets who are daily sent out from the Great Salt Lake City to deccive the people. It is my intention to travel through the United States, and visit all the principal cities, and lecture on this great and important subject, to caution all young people who should be so unfortunate as to be led into the ungodly trap. Beware!

In Boston I shall deliver my first lecture, as that is my native city. I have one young lady in company who also left the Mormons with me. She has denounced the doctrines, and will help me in my lectures. We shall both be present, and show Mormonism in its true colors, which you never have had in your enlightened State. Had it been represented in its true light, and its object told, there would not have been a follower left sweet New England to join such a set of impostors, for I can call them nothing else, knowing them to be such. If there should be any elders or followers of Mormonism, I hope they will come to the lectures, and dispute what we have to say if they can. We have and shall fetch documents to prove our assertions.

We shall be there in a few weeks. We are at present staying with friends, and as soon us we are refreshed from the journey we shall start for Boston. It is near two months since we left the Salt Lake City. You shall hear from me again, with more particulars. But no more at present from your humble servants,
Mrs. SARAH YOUNG,       

Note: There is no historical evidence for a "Mrs. Sarah Young" having left Brigham Young during the mid-1850s -- also no record of such a person delivering any lectures in Boston (her native city?) at that time.


ns. Vol. I.                         Ravenna, Ohio, Wednesday, February 21, 1855.                         No. 47.

Another  Letter  from  one  of
Brigham  Young's  Wives.


The Boston Times, Feb. 12th, says, by the following letter, it will be seen that we are soon to have the startling disclosure of Mormonism, referred to in a letter lately published in the Times. The lecturer (one of Brigham Young's wives,) has left Chicago, and, it will be seen from the date of her letter, she is expected to arrive here as soon as the neccssary arrangements for the delivery of her lectures are made.

Pittsfield, Mass., Feb. 8, 1855.        
Once more I emhrace the opportunity of writing to you, to inform you that I shall be in your city to give lectures on Mormonism, next week or the week following. I will acknowledge I have some fears to lecture on this point, for I have been informed, upon good authority, that Mr. Young has sent on two men to stop my career. They say I shall not give a lecture; but I will try -- and I hope the people of Boston will protect me -- a woman. For I have done nothing I regret, except joining the Society of Mormons, and marrying the leader.

They cannot find or bring anything against my moral character. I am ready to meet them, or any other Mormons, at the Hall. -- They say I was legally married to Brigham Young. I was, in their way, but will this government tolerate that? Will it give me up, and let these Mormon emissaries carry me back to Salt Lake? If I have done anything criminal, I will go, without resistance. But they do not pretend to say that. All they say is, he (Mr. Young) is my lawful husband, but they forget, he had twenty odd wives when we were married. I was at the time innocent and sincere. Since I have seen enough, and know the society to be corrupt, and governed by bad men for bad motives; I shall tell everything just as it is. I shall not stop for the feelings of those present -- no, not for Mr.Young himself -- but shall tell the whole truth, and unfold all the mysteries conuected with the institution.

I am well aware what the consequences would be, providing they had me in their power at Salt Lake. Death would pay for that which I am about to reveal.

There are two very important secrets in Mormonism, of which none but head leaders are aware, and they are brought to it by the most solemn oath. A part of this information I obtained from papers that I found. One morning, after Young left my bed, I discovered onder my pillow a paper, of which I have a copy. It is a secret plot, contrived to overthrow this government. In that package I also found the plan of a fort; at the top of the plan it said, "Three tiers, two hundred and six guns each." I also heard one of the leaders say, "Uncle Sam would not disturb them before they got the underground works done, and , with their Scotts and Wools." This I heard by eaves-dropping, besides a good deal more, of which I have not time to write. The Indians have had the promiee that all of the land that has been taken from them shall be returned. Mr. Young pretends to be their friend, and. they all, to a man, will fight for him and the Mormons. -- Not only one tribe, but all the Chiefs in the farwest; are favorable to the cause and that people. They will all follow their Chiefs, and with their help, after they have the ground fixed for war, the emigrants to and from California will find no mercy. They say they will also appoint the Governor of Utah, and they mean to enlarge their territory and extend it to the Pacific, and as far north and south as they like. I can tell more than I can have time to write.
Mrs. SARAH YOUNG,       

Note: There is no historical evidence for a "Mrs. Sarah Young" having left Brigham Young during the mid-1850s -- also no record of such a person delivering any lectures in Boston (her native city?) at that time.


Vol. XXX.                               Painesville, Ohio,  April 30, 1855.                                   No. ?


Elder Martin Harris, of the Latter Day Saints, on Friday last, baptized a happy convert in the river, near the Geauga Mills.

Note 1: According to H. Michael Marquardt, in his 2002 Dialogue article, "Martin Harris: The Kirtland Years, "In October 1855, Stephen Post... in Kirtland... recorded in his journal: 'Br. Martin Harris had published a proclamation... through a Miss Sexton a Spirit medium of Cleveland. Wm. Smith got a revelation given through the same medium...' At this time William Smith gave fictitious names to different elders who were to assist him in this work... on 7 October, a conference met in the Kirtland Temple. Harris was chosen president... At this time, travelers to Kirtland also reported the activity of Martin Harris and William Smith... 'Martin Harris reorganized the Church... with 6 members. Appointed Wm. Smith their leader... [but] Harris drove Wm. Smith out.'"

Note 2: William Smith did not remain for very long at Kirtland during the fall of 1855, but in the time that he spent there he perhaps met the widow Eliza Elsie Sanborn Brain. William returned to the midwest, and on July 13, 1856 he wrote Brigham Young a bitter latter, from Turkey River, Clayton Co., Iowa. At some point in time not very long after that date, William Smith returned to the Kirtland area and there married Mrs. Brain on Nov. 12, 1857. The couple's first child, William Enoch Smith, was born July 24, 1858 in neighboring Erie Co., Pennsylvania.

Note 3: William's nephew, Joseph Smith III, recalled in his later years that his Uncle William had once preached for the Baptists in New York or Pennsylvania. It is possible that Eliza Elsie Sanborn's family were members of the Baptist Church and that William joined that religious group for awhile. He says in his 1857 letter to the New York Tribune, "I am not a Mormon," and that must have been the confession which William shared with his non-LDS friends, c. 1856-59, in northeastern Pennsylvania. Erie Co., Pennsylvania and Chautauqua Co., New York are adjoining counties, so the "Rev. William Smith" might easily have preached in both localities before eventually falling into disfavor there, for "teaching heretical doctrine." At about the same time as the War between the States began, William Smith moved his family back to Clayton Co., Iowa.


Vol. XI.                             Cleveland, Ohio, Thursday, May 3, 1855.                             No. 28.

Brigham  Young's  Manifesto.

Intrinsically the sayings and doings of the Mormons are of no great account, only as showing the length to which human credulity can go, when strong appeals are made to the faith, rather than to the reason of mankind. But the political bearings of the extraordinary sentiments of that peculiar people, are matters of great and continually increasing interest, inasmuch as they present for public consideration questions which have never, as yet, been definitely settled, and to settle which may require a profounder wisdom than is often put in requisitlon to meet the exigencies of human governments. Their government is neither more nor less than a Theocracy -- a government professedly derived from God himself; and Brigham Young is the Prophet, the vicegerent of God. He combines in himself all the prerogatives of Prophet, Priest, and King. He is a Law-giver more potant than Moses; a Priest at least equal to Aaron, and a King equal to David or Solomon. And besides, as a Patriarch he places himself on the platform with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, setting aside the teachings of Christ and the Apostles, who greatly insinuated that one wife was sufficent, and in the face of civilization asserting that polygamy, though a diabolical thing for the men and women of the world, is a capital thing for the Latter Day Saints. And here is a sect more thoroughly imbued with the spirit of proselytism than any other under heaven -- more assuming as regards politlcal matters than any other class of men, and more bold in the declaration of their assumptions. And it is one of the questions of the day, how are the people of this country to manage and dispose of this matter?

Doubtless Mormonism will endeavor to conform itself to the spirit of our laws and institutions, and for the present, at all events, it will do so, so far as externals are concerned. And still it will contain, in the very body and soul of its church, that which will forever be in opposition to a Republican form of government. This is distinctly evident from the nature of these things. A people ruled by God through divinely appointed instrumentalities, are the last to submit to the laws and institutions of men outside of their sectarian enclosure. And it is no new thing under the sun for religionists sufferlng from a plethera of divine light and grace, to become exacting in their demands, and pugnacious in the maintenance of their assumed superiority. In our midst are those who are prone to appeal from the laws of the land to the higher law which their interpretation have put into the mouth of God, and the Catholic Church is said to be a dangerous institution because its authority is supposed to over-ride that of human rulers. What, then, shall we say of Mormonism? It is bold, frank, and intelligible to the utterance of its doctrines and dogmas. Armed with invincible determinatlons, and seemingly conscious alike of its power and the rlghteousness of its cause, it does not resort to the subterfuge of hypocricy, but declares its object in the face of the world, and defies the powers of earth and hell to prevent the accomplishment of its mission. What than be done? Let it alone. -- Force, the usual weapon of ignorance, will only multiply the victims of the delusion. It must be tolerated, in common with all other errors of opinion or belief. But it must be kept within due bounds. If it becomes meddlesome, aggresive, belligerant, or dictatorial, then let it be driven back within the _sanctum sanctorum_ of its own sectarian sphere, and kept there, till it learns how to behave itself. Till then, allow it to "have free course, run, and be glorified," or be otherwise disposed of according to the verdict which an enlightened world shall bring in, after due consideration.

As a matter of general interest, we subjoin the following extract from a speech delivered in Great Salt Lake City, by Brigham Young, in February last. Taken as a whole, it is a strange admixture of piety, philosphy, humility, and slang -- a rare specimen of oratory, illustrative of the relation between the sublime and the ridiculous.

"Brethren and Sisters -- Our friends wish to know our feelings towards the government. I answer, they are first-rate, and we will prove it too, as you will see if you only live long enough, for that we shall live to prove it is certain; and when the Constitution of the United States hangs, as it were, upon a single thread, they will have to call for the Mormon elders to save it from utter destruction; and they will step forth and do it.

We love the Constitution of our country; it is all we could ask; though in some few instances there might be some amendments made which would better it. We love the Federal Government, and the laws of Congress. There is nothing in those laws that in the least militates against us, not even to our excluding common law from this Territory. I can inform our lawyers who plead at the bar here, that the Congress of the United States have passed laws giving us the privilege of excluding common law at our pleasure, and that too without any violation of the Constitution, or general statutes. They have also given us privilege to stop drunkenness, swearing, and gambling, and to prevent horse racing, and to punish men for robbing or hurting each other. The Constitution of the United States, and the whole federal government, in their acts, have given us this privilege.

Now I will tell you one thing that I am opposed to, and that this people are opposed to; it is to a man's coming here as an officer, with a bit of sheep's skin in his pocket having some great man's name to it, and beginning to set up his rules of discipline for the people, and saying, "I am a gentleman, I am a high-minded gentleman; can you tell me where I can find a woman to sleep with me to-night?" and setting up gambling shops, and drinking, and carousing, and stirring up strife, and hatching up law-suits; hunting out disaffected spirits, and then lecturing the people on morality, wishing them to become like other communities, and saying to Mrs. Such-a-one or Miss Such-a-one, "Won't you ride with me -- won't you take a sleigh ride to-night with me? I am a high-minded gentleman." A prudent father, or husband, says, "Come here; this is your place; you have no business with strangers." What is the result of this? Why, from most of the high-minded gentlemen, you can hear, "God damn the Mormons, they are opposed to the federal government, because they will not let us sleep with their wives and daughters." I am opposed to such men, and am after them with the barbed arrows of the Almighty. To what extent? Let them intrude upon the chastity of my family, and, so help me God, I will use them up. (All the congregation said, "Amen.") Such characters may cry, "aliens, aliens; the Mormons are all hostile to the government," and they may cry it until they are in hell. * * * Corrupt men cannot walk these streets with impunity, and if that is alienism to the government, amen to it. The Constitution of the United States we sustain all the day long, and it will sustain and shield us, while the men who say we are aliens, and cry out "Mormon disturbance," will go to hell. There have been officers here who were not fit to live in our midst, and they ran home, and raised the cry, "Mormon disturbances," "Mormon rebellion," "Mormon war," and, "treasoners;" but their day is over.

When a man professes to be my friend, and the friend of this people, he will take my counsel, instead of stirring up strife, and practising iniquity. I dislike the wilfully corrupt, and by and bye I will come out thunder-like, as I have done upon others when practising iniquity; and as I did upon a certain individual when he made his glorious speech, and insulted this people, from the highest to the lowest. I chastised him, and he ran off and reported as my sayings those which I did not say.

It was told him, while he was on the plains, that President Zachary Taylor was dead and damned, and it has gone through the states, from side to side, that I said so. It was first given out that the Mormons said so, and then that Brigham said so; well, I backed it up, because I knew it was true. I have just as good a right to say that President Taylor is in hell, as to say that any other miserable sinner is there. Was he any more than flesh and blood? I have as good a right to canvass him in a religious point of view, as I have to canvass the peasant upon the dung-hill. He has gone there, and so have many others; and the Lord Almighty is removing the bitter branches, as foretold in the Book of Mormon.

The newspapers are teeming with statements that I said, "President Pierce and all hell could not remove me from office." I will tell you what I did say, and what I now say; the Lord reigns and rules in the armies of the heavens, and does his pleasure among the inhabitants of the earth. He sets up a kingdom here, and pulls down another there, at his pleasure. He walks in the midst of the people, and they know it, not. He makes kings, presidents, and governors at his pleasure; hence I conclude that I shall be governor of Utah Territory, just as long as he wants me to be; and for that time, neither the President of the United States; nor any other power can prevent it. Then, brethren and sisters, be not worried about my being dismissed from office; for when the President appoints another man to be governor of Utah territory, you may acknowledge that the Lord has done it, for we should acknowledge His hand in all things."

Notes: (forthcoming)


Daily  Commercial  Register.

ns. Vol. IV.                           Sandusky, Tuesday May 22, 1855.                           No. 303.

The  Trail  of  the  Serpent.

Late advices from Utah bring information which will convince the people of the States that the bogus prophet at the head of the Mormons is acting in bad faith towards the government. In October, 1853, Capt. J. W. Gunnison, with a detachment of a surveying party, seven in number, was massacred by a band of Ute Indians. Col. Steptoe was despatched in the spring of 1854 with a strong force to bring the perpetrators of the brutal murder to justice. Upon the advice of Brigham Young, instead of giving them battle, he visited the Chief of the band, Kenoshe, and induced him to surrender six of the warriors engaged in the massacre, into the hands of the civil authorities, to be dealt with according to law. -- Three of these were indicted by the Grand Jury of Juab county, and the remainder discharged. Ankle-Joint, Sandy-Hair, and White Tree were put on trial for the murder; and here commenced the diabolical agency of Young. The notorious Col. Babitt, a tool of Brigham's, volunteered for their defence and commenced a system of tampering with the witnesses, intended to work an acquittal. Not satisfied with this, the jury were instructed by Young to find a verdict of manslaughter only, whereas the testimony overwhelmingly justified one of murder in the first degree, The court told the jury in plain terms, that it could only convict of murder in the first degree or aquit, that the crime of manslaughter could not be inferred from the testimony. Yet the Mormon jury chose to obey the behest of their false prophet, rather than the oath they had taken, or the dictates of their own conscience. If the blood-thirsty savages are thus assured of the sympathy of the Mormons, and are allowed to get off with a paltry [few] years' imprisonment [when they ---- --- ---] surveying parties, it is easy to see that nobody will be safe in their vicinity unless they are under an escort of the Mormon allies of these savages. It is evident that Brigham Young is no friend to the country or its authorities, however much hypocritical pretension he may make that he will submit to its legally appointed officers. -- Trouble is surely brewing in that quarter of our territory.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Daily  Commercial  Register.

Vol. IV.                       Sandusky, Ohio, Wednesday,  May 23, 1855.                       No. 304.


==> Bill Smith, brother of Joe, has written a letter, in which he says that the system of polygamy, got up by Brigham Young, and the other evils which grew out of it, are a libel and a slander upon the character of the prophet, whose bones now lie mouldering in a martyr's grave; and were Joseph Smith to come forth from his lowly bed, and view the condition of things in Salt Lake country, he would spurn from his presence Brigham Young, and denounce his doctrine.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Daily  Commercial  Register.

Vol. IV.                       Sandusky, Ohio, Friday,  May 25, 1855.                       No. 306.


CONDITION OF MORMON WOMEN. -- An officer belonging to Col. Steptoe's command now stationed at Salt Lake City, in a letter to the Providence Journal, thus speaks of the condition of the Mormon women:

With a word about melancholy condition I will bring my long letter to a close. As a general thing, a woman here, having satisfied what we call the “lust,” but what the Mormons call “the holy desires,” of some righteous elders, is left to shift for herself; not the least support does she receive from him to whom she has been in many cases forced to prostitute herself. Their condition is infinitely worse than that of the slaves at the South.

One of the wives of "the chief of the Twelve Apostles" washes for a boarding house here to support herself. Two wives of Parley P. Pratt, another Apostle, have repeatedly begged for work. Woman here have told me that their pretended husbands have not visited them for months and years. One of the apostles asked a family of three girls to marry him, and to get them he would take the old mother. They refused, and he has since maligned them in every way.

We receive many requests for assistance to leave from women in every position. Their case is peculiarly hard, separated by hundreds of miles of plain and desert from the outside world, brought here by false inducements, degraded and oppressed, with no hope of succor, they are in great, very great numbers entirely disaffected. -- They abhor the very thought of polygamy, the very name of Mormonism. This is the honest, simple truth.

Note 1: The above excerpt was copied from a mid-May issue of the Rhode Island Providence Journal, (which has yet to be located). The correspondent was evidently Lieutenant Sylvester Mowry, who was attached to the Northern Pacific Railroad Exploring Expedition, headed by the future governor of Washington Territory, Isaac Ingalls Stevens. The expedition fell under the command of Col. Steptoe when it arrived at Great Salt Lake City. While on his way west, and following his arrival in Utah and California, Mowry penned letters to Edward (Ned) Bicknell, a friend residing in Providence. Several of those letters went unclaimed at the post office and were belatedly published in 1958. Other Mowry letters from the same period found their way to the Journal's editorial office, including one reprinted in the Salem Observer of Apr. 21, 1855; still other Mowry letters were evidently published in mid-1855 issues of the New York Herald.

Note 2: While in Utah Lt. Mowry amorously pursued some of the Mormon women, much to the chagrin of leaders such as Brigham Young (whose own daughter-in-law was reportedly seduced by the "gallant" soldier). That fall the New York Sun reported: "The Mormon ladies were captivated in scores by the 'fascinating dogs.' Each 'bold soldier boy,' when they took up their march for California, who would consent to have a female companion du voyage, and had the ability to provide for her transportation, was supplied, and there were few but left some loving girls behind them. Prophet Brigham is red hot with wrath, and swears vengeance, but we do not think he will hurt anybody."


Vol. XI.                             Cleveland, Ohio, Thursday, June 7, 1855.                             No. 58.

(From our Traveling Correspondent.)

The Excursionist -- Trip to Nauvoo --
"Vestiges" of Mormons --
Explorations Among the Ruins --
French Seminary -- Removal of the Buildings.

Burlington, June 1.        
By especial invitation, our portion of the excursionists took the Jenny Lind steamer, and made a visit to the ruins of the not very ancient city of Nauvoo. I would like to say here that Captain Martin, of that little boat Jenny Lind, is a gentleman every inch of him. We wandered around the streets and walls of Nauvoo for two or three hours, taking notes here and there. The Temple will soon be rated among the things that were, since the fire that destroyed its greater portion. The owners (a French Company) have torn down nearly all its walls, and built a school building upon one corner of the same square. All that remains of that once stately Temple, is the vestibule, formed by the front, inner, and side-walls, to the extreme height of the original edifice, just enough to let you form an idea of its former shape. It will not stand in its present position long, even if the vandals do not disturb it; for the wreck that fire and the weather have made upon it, will soon level it with the rest.

Poor, miserable, modern Babylon! I wandered over the ruins of your once proud city in wondering amazement, and can exclaim in the language of the poet, who wrote of that ancient destruction: "Nauvoo has fallen! the Queen of cities has fallen! Low lay her bulwarks -- the scorpion basks in palace-courts, and in her sanctuary the she-wolf hid her whelps." As to scorpions and wolves, the poet's description. would not apply to Nauvoo; but in their stead we might name the moles and the bats -- the swallows and the tumble bugs.

Upon landing you see nothing but a high and gentle bluff, two ruined warehouses, one whose eastern wall is entirely gone, but the remainder stands a monument, like all the rest of the city. The ruined town lies a half a mile over the river bluffs, on a commanding eminence, overlooking a wide-spread country. You see the thriving village of Montrose, on the Iowa side, and the fruitful prairies, in almost every direction. We caught a glimpse of the ruins of the Temple before we landed; a ravine opened up just enough to afford a bird's-eye view.

Post haste I pressed forward as soon as we landed, with an earnest desire to find some vehicle by which I could carry my charge around the city. Found a kind old farmer who, for the offer of a liberal sum of money, put his two horses and lumber-box in my charge. The old fellow lived eight miles off, and was only there by chance. There is a respectable store there, kept by a German, whereat he sometimes trades. Once possessed of the reins, I was a sort of King of Babylon. The fairest of the fair were supplicants at my feet; I was appealed to by dozens and fifties of the dear creatures, for a privilege in my carry-all. Of course I was gracious enough to grant any good-looking lady's request, careful meanwhile to retain the reins in my own hands. Up and down, around the ruins we wandered. The ladies were all busy gathering up relics of the Temple. I saw the romantic young lady pounding away at the eyebrows of an image of St. Peter. Poor girl! she did not get a chunk big enough to speak of, so I gave her a big slice, which I succeeded in battering off the ear of Judas Iscariot. Enough blocks of granite (the stone resembles granite) were taken from the ruins to build a small temple.

The Temple property was purchased by a French Company, with view of making a settlement around it. They established a school which is now flourishing. A French paper is published there. I learned that the French have bought in the interior of Iowa, and will soon remove to their new possessions. Their school is conducted with much regularity and apparent skill. The proverbial politeness of the French did not take offence at the Yankee inquisitiveness of a portion of our party, throngs of which would first beset their kitchen, then their dining-room, their pastry rooms; their school rooms, until their insatiable thirst for knowledge under difficulties, was partially gratified.

My good, old boniface farmer, whose nags I had, gave me all the information as pertaining to the history of the city and the Temple that I was able to obtain on the premises. He informed me that the mother and widow of Joe Smith, the father of Mormonism, still reside at Nauvoo, and keep a tavern. They do not feel disposed to follow their friends to the far-off West, as they do not embrace the faith of the Prophet Joe.

The town itself was not sold to the French; nothing but the Temple was purchased by them. The title to most of the lots being in some few who remained after the pilgrimage of the Mormons, were sold at ruinously low rates, to any that would buy; and splendid mansions, princely enough for an old English Baron, have been sold for a barrel of flour, or even a quarter of beef, the purchaser being perhaps some farmer from the neighborhood in Iowa or Illinois, valuable to him only for the purpose of taking apart and removing to his home. A large number of these houses were bought and removed to Montrose, a short distance below. As many as three hundred of those buildings have been removed in this manner. A book could be written upon the rise, progress and fall of the Mormons at Nauvoo; but have no time. I had the good luck to deposit my precious load all safe on the right side of Jordan, without wetting or mussing a single ruffle.

The extent of country that can be overlooked at the summit in Nauvoo is very great; the rolling prairies are spread before you and the back country of Illinois is plainly in view, all looking rich and love]y. With unmistakable certainty, you can tell when your neighbors of the surrounding country have rain, and when they have sunshine. Our party felt as if there was a slight shower at Nauvoo to-day. M.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. 41.                             Canton, Ohio, Aug. 1, 1855.                             No. 16.


==> Accounts from the Sacramento Valley, Cal. say, that the Grasshoppers are destroying the crops there, as well as in Utah. Accounts also state that they are finding gold and silver on Sweet Water river, on the plains, and that the Mormons were at work damming and turning that stream from its bed.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Daily  Commercial  Register.

Vol. V.                       Sandusky, Ohio, Tuesday,  August 7, 1855.                       No. 61.


==> The Mormons, as is well known, have a large colony on Beaver Island, Lake Michigan. This is a fragment of the main body, having left it before the emigration to the Salt Lake. Its members do not recognize the supremacy of Brigham Young, but have a prophet of their own. Lately this division of the Saints held, at Holy Island, a conference, in which they listened to a recital of their persecutions, and especially of the efforts to dispossess them of the Island. Then followed a solemn thanksgiving and praise to God for their happy deliverance from civil war and other persecutions, after which the sacraments were administered and the camp broke up. Next day the party proceeded to the mouth of Pine river, where they errected a gallows and hung in effigy the men who made the attack on two boat loads of unarmed Mormons, at that place, two years since. -- The following day they erected a new church building. Recent accounts from Salt Lake say that the Mormons in Utah are openly defying the United States Government. They even have a flag of their own, embellished with the device of a bee hive, and discard the Union National flag. They are said to have a factory where they make fire arms. This, however, is only by directions of the rulers, for many of the Mormon people are dissatisfied, and desire to emigrate to California. Times are dull, money scarce, and labor not in demand. A number of families with wagons and cattle have arrived in California from the Salt Lake, and others were desirous of leaving, but were prevented by Brigham Young, who had them closely watched to prevent their departure after night. This is somewhat remarkable, as being the first symptom of discontent yet manifested by Young's subjects. It will, doubtless, be hailed all over the Union as a favorable indication, and as showing the likelihood of a change in the condition of affairs in Utah.

Notes: (forthcoming)


ns. Vol. II.                        Columbus, Ohio, Saturday,  October 6, 1855.                              No. 109.


==> The news from Utah is, that there are no hopes of a famine to scatter the Mormons. The grasshoppers have yielded up the ghost in the vain attempt to devour the vegetation in the valley of the Great Salt Lake. The country must hereafter depend upon the gallantry of its soldiers for the subjection of Mormonism. The few who were quartered in Great Salt Lake City last winter were very successful. The Mormon ladies were captivated in scores by the "fascinating dogs." Each "bold soldier boy," when they took up their march for California, who would consent to have a female companion du voyage, and had the ability to provide for her transportation, was supplied, and there were few but left some loving girls behind them. Prophet Brigham is red hot with wrath, and swears vengeance, but we do not think he will hurt anybody -- N. Y. Sun.

Note: See also the Sandusky Commercial Register of May 25, 1855.


Vol. 41.                             Canton, Ohio, Oct. 24, 1855.                             No. 28.

Mormon Principles

Appear to be extending to New York. We notice by telegraphic despatches, and other sources, the Fourierites, having failed in their plan of new modelling society by forming Communities, have started a new sect, calling themselves "Free Lovers."... The details of their acts are horrible. Its beastiality comes up to the worst accounts we have had from the Mormons at Salt Lake.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. 41.                             Canton, Ohio, Oct. 31, 1855.                             No. 29.


THE PUBLIC LANDS. -- We have nominally 1,400,000 square miles of territory, say 8 or ten hundred millions of acres, but 5/6th of it valueless. The government cannot now -- is unable to supply the demand to actual settlers, at $1.25: this is owing to the grants made to States, companies, and soldiers. In Utah there are 34,000 Mormons occupying land without a title, and there is no likelihood that for 5 years to come it can be surveyed and sold.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. 41.                             Canton, Ohio, Nov. 7, 1855.                             No. 30.


==> The Mormons of Utah have founded a new settlement on Salmon river, near the Rocky mountains. -- Salmon river is nowhere near Utah. In fact, it is a long distance from their territory in the heart of Oregon, and thus the new Mormon settlement is a new movement, and not a mere branch of any of the Mormon settlements near the border.

Note: Fort Limhi was founded in June, 1855, on a tributary of the Salmon River, by the Utah Mormons, as a mission to the "Lamanites" of Oregon Territory. At the height of its activity the settlement had less than 40 white inhabitants. It was abandoned at the time "Johnson's Army" was marching on Salt Lake City, leaving only the memory of its name in Idaho's "Lemhi County."


ns. Vol. II.                             Columbus, Ohio, Wed., November 14, 1855.                             No. 142.


==> GEO. A. SMITH, "Historian of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, is engaged in his work, and extracts appear in the Deseret News. Some items will be of interest to our readers hereabout.

HISTORY OF KIRTLAND MORMONISM. -- The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints was organized in Manchester, New York, on the 6th of April, 1830, and was then composed of six members, who were baptized by immersion under the hands of Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery, who received the apostleship by commandment from God and the administration of heavenly messengers, and were the first elders of the church.

Through the labors of Joseph Smith, Hyrum Smith, Oliver Cowdery and other elders, who had been ordained, branches were established in New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, the British provinces and the New England States.

Large branches of the Church was established in Kirtland, Geauga County, Ohio, and, the spirit of persecution pursuing all the branches to a very great extent, the Saints commenced gathering to Kirtland.

On March 25, 1832, Joseph Smith and Elder Sidney Rigdon were dragged from their beds at midnight, in the town of Hiram, Portage County, Ohio, daubed with tar and feathers, and severely injured. Aqua fortis was poured into President Joseph Smith's mouth, and he was held by the throat until left for dead. One of his children was sick with the measles, and being in bed with him, was thereby exposed to the night air, and died almost immediately; she may, therefore, be called the first martyr of this dispensation.

In June, 1833, a commencement was made for the building of a Temple in Kirtland.

In the fall of 1833, a printing press was established in Kirtland, Ohio, where Oliver Cowdery commenced the republication of the Evening and Morning Star.

The Temple in Kirtland was so far completed as to be dedicated on 27th of March, 1836; 416 Elders being present in a general council on the evening of the dedication. This Temple is a stone building, 89 feet by 60, the walls 50 feet high, and tower 110 feet high. There are two main halls, 54 feet by 65 in the inner court, four vestries in the front, and five school rooms in the attic. The whole building was well finished, and a fine specimen of architecture.

In June, 1837, Heber C. Kimball, Orson Hyde, Willard Richards and Joseph Fielding started from Kirtland on a mission to the British Islands.

In 1837 the greater portion of the Saints in Kirtland, Ohio, moved to Missouri.

In December the printing office in Kirtland was destroyed by fire, which was the work of an incendiary.

Note: The extract given above was taken from the Deseret news of Sept. 5, 1855. There the writer, Apostle George A. Smith, mistakenly calls the child who died in 1832 a girl. See B. H. Roberts' correction of this mistake in the Deseret Weekly of Apr. 1, 1893. Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XII.                             Cleveland, Ohio, Saturday, March 22, 1856.                             No. 71.

History  of  Kirtland Mormon.

(From Deseret News.)

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints was organized in Manchester, New York, on the 6th of April, 1830, and was then composed of six members, who were baptised by immersion, under the hands of Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery, who received the apostleship by commandment of, God, and the administration of heavenly messengers, and were the first elders of the church.

Through the labors of Joseph Smith, Hyrum Smith, Oliver Cowdery, and other elders who had been ordained, branches were established in New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, the British Provinces and New England States.

A large Branch of the Church was established in Kirtland, Geauga county, Ohio; and the spirit of persecution pursuing all the Branches to a very great extent, the Saints commenced gathering to Kirtland.

On March 25, 1832; Joseph Smith and Elder Sidney Rigdon were dragged from their beds at midnight, in the town of Hiram, Portage county, Ohio, daubed with tar and feathers and severely injured. Aqua fortis was poured into President Smith's mouth, and he was held by the throat until left for dead. One of his children was sick with the measles, and being in bed with him at the time of the outrage, was thereby exposed to the night air, and died almost immediately; she [sic] may, therefore, be called the first martyr of this dispensation.

In June 1833, a commencement [was] made for the building of a Temple in Kirtland.

In the fall of 1833, a printing press was established in Kirtland, Ohio, where Oliver Cowdery commenced the [republication] of the Evening and Morning Star.

The Temple in Kirtland was so far completed as to be dedicated on the 27th March, 1836, 416 Elders being present in a General Council on the evening of the dedication. The Temple is a stone building 89 feet by 90, the walls 50 feet high, and the tower 110 feet high. There are two main halls 54 feet by 65 in the inner court, four vestries in the front, and five school rooms in the attic. The building is well finished, and a fine specimen of architecture.

In June 1837, Heber C. Kimball, Orson Hyde, and three others, started from Kirtland on a mission to with Willard Richards to British Islands.

In 1837, the greater portion of the Saints in Kirtland moved to Missouri.

In December the printing office in Kirtland was destroyed by fire, the work of an incendiary.

Note: In the Millennial Star reprint, the place of 1830 church organization was changed to say "The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was organized at the house of Peter Whitmer, sen., Fayette, Seneca county, New York, on the 6th April, 1830..." See also the Columbus Statesman of Nov. 14, 1855, for the same Manchester location statement.


Vol. 41.                             Canton, Ohio, March 26, 1856.                             No. 50.


==> The Mormons are taking the incipient steps for applying for admission into the Union as a State. Can they be admitted with Polygamy;   never.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Daily  Commercial  Register.

Vol. V.                       Sandusky, Ohio, Wednesday,  April 23, 1856.                       No. 280.

A  Mormon  State.

The consideration of the important question of the admission of Utah as a State will not be much longer deferred, if we may judge by the recent political movements in that Territory. The late mails bring the proceedings of a district Convention held not long since in Cove, in Beaver county, to take into consideration the propriety of holding a general Convention during the present Spring, to form a constitution and plan of State government for the Territory. There was a very large attendance, some of the delegates having come over a hundred and fifty miles. The speeches on the occasion were full of enthusiasm, and unanimously favored the immediate formation of a State government, and application for admission to the Union. The population of the Territory is stated to be one hundred thousand.

The Federal officers sent there do not appear to be held in very high estimation in Utah, as may be inferred from the following resolution.

"Resolved. That we, as a people appreciate the inconveniences arising from the appointment of Federal officers by the General overnment, who generally have no interest in the country, and whose only recommendation is the fact of their having performed some degrading political service or party tricks, in some other country, and whose only anxiety is to fill their own pockets, promote their own ease and comfort, regardless of the results of their own official blunders or criminal neglect to the inhabitants of the Territory."

The above movement furnishes a practical application of the principal of "Squatter Sovereignty," which Gen. Cass, and other advocates of that new political dogma probably did not anticipate. In shaping a coat to fit Slavery, they inadvertently made one which fits equally well that other barbarous institution -- polygamy, as it exists in Utah. The sensualists of the proposed new State make the same claim in behalf of polygamy, that the Southern advocates of squatter sovereignty do for Slavery, viz. that it is strictly a "domestic" and "local" institution, which the people of a State, and they alone, have a right to establish and regulate, without the interference of the Federal authorities. Upon that ground, they claim with equal propriety the right to demand admission into the Union as a sovereign State. How the advocates of the admission of new States "with or without Slavery," will meet the application of the same principle to the Mormon "institution" is a dilemma from which they find difficulty in extracting themselves, in any other way than by repudiating their "sovereignty" doctrine, or allowing it full play in the admission of Utah.

Both of these courses are beset with serious embarrassments. The first involves an abandonment of the most plausible, available and effective argument of Slavery propagandism, -- the throwing away of its chief weapon, defensive and agressive, and as such, might be considered as a virtual surrender. The other alternative will array against them the moral sense, the religious convictions and the social prejudices of the whole civilized world, and especially of the Christian and enlightened States of the Union, -- shrinking, as they do, from an odious and contaminating confederacy with a State, whose organic law subverts the most sacred of human institutions, and rears upon its ruins a foul and loathsome system of concubinage.

From the lips of these apostles of a new political faith has as yet fallen no expression of opinion in reference to the claims of Utah, from which an inference may be drawn concerning the position they will take, when the question of the admission of that State is presented for their decision. It may be, that they have hoped and expected that such a question would not arise until after the squatter soveregnty doctrine had answered its purpose in securing the admission of Kansas as a Slave State. Such a consummation being effected through its instrumentality, and its utility having been thus exhausted, it would involve no great sacrifice to throw it aside when Utah should ask for admission. Unfortunately for such a scheme, the fruits of the Mormon enterprise have matured more rapidly than was anticipated, and a new and embarrassing question has become linked with the original issue, in this threatened demand of Utah for recognition as a State. In other words, Utah is about to attempt to crowd itself into the family circle of States through the same door which was opened for Kansas -- that of squatter sovereignty.

It is barely possible that the admission of this new applicant may be made a point in the ensuing Presidential campaign, and with this view, it is well for statesmen and voters to look the question fairly in the face, that they may have their decisions ready, when the time for action arrives. But independently of such considerations, this possible application of one of the most popular of madern fallacies, furnishes an instructive illustration of the hollowness and rottenness of all political theories like that to which we have referred, which are invented to subserve a preconcerted purpose -- whether it be to cover a fraud intended, or to justify a wrong already comitted.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Daily  Commercial  Register.

Vol. V.                       Sandusky, Ohio, Monday,  April 28, 1856.                       No. 285.


UTAH. -- As the Mormons expect some difficulty in working their way into the Union, on account of their doctrines of Polygamy, they mean to be right on the slavery question. Some of their principal men there, Judge Drummond, Judge Kinny, and some others, have lately made an ostentatious display of the sale and purchase of negroes.

Notes: (forthcoming)


The  Ohio  State  Journal.

Vol. XLVI.                 Columbus, Ohio, Wednesday, June 4, 1856.                 No. 10.


The Deseret News (Mormon) is "down on" the practice of young men who have a piece of looking-glass fixed in the inside of their hat, and who, pretending to be praying with their face in their hat, are quietly and slyly looking at the faces of the girls [seated] behind them reflected in the glass.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XII.                             Cleveland, Ohio, Friday, June 20, 1856.                             No. 148.


DETROIT, June 19. -- At Beaver Island, on the 16th inst., James J. Strang, Mormon leader, was shot by two of his former followers, receiving three balls in his body. One of his assailants afterwards struck him a severe blow on the head with a pistol. At the last advices, at noon on the 17th, Strang was alive, but his state was considered critical. The assailants were arrested.

Notes: (forthcoming)


The  Ohio  State  Journal.

Vol. XLVI.                 Columbus, Ohio, Wednesday, July 9, 1856.                 No. 15.

Assassination  of  Strang,
the Beaver Island Mormon Leader.

Before this time, in all human probability, James J. Strang, the leader of the Mormon settlement on Beaver Island, is among the dead. On Monday afternoon, between six and seven o'clock, Captain McBride of the United States steamer Michigan, (which was lying at the pier at Beaver island,) sent his pilot, Alex St. Aubin, a steerage hand, a short distance off, with a request for Strang to come on board the steamer upon some business. Strang returned with St. Aubin, and when about half way down the dock two men stepped out from behind the woodpiles, with which both sides of the dock are lined, there being only a passage way between the wood, and one of the men fired a revolver, the ball striking Strang in the back of the head, passing around under the skin, coming out near the temporal bones.

He then fired a second barrel, the ball of which struck Strang near the autram, about level with the nose, and passed into his head; the other man then fired a single pistal, the ball from which struck Strang near the vertebral column, at the small of the back, and passed into his body. The men, whose names are Alexander Wentworth and Thomas Bedford, made no attempt to escape, but surrendered themselves up to Capt. Mc Bride. Strang was picked up and carried into a house near by, apparently dead, but after a few moments he revived sufficiently to ask the surgeon of the Michigan, who was in attendance, if the ball could be extracted. Neither the ball in the head nor that in tbe loins was traced, and as either of them had created a mortal wound it was not strongly attempted. The opinion of the surgeon is that long ere this he is dead.

Thomas Bedford, one of the men who committed the act, had been whipped forty lashes on the bare back with a scourge made of blue beach sprouts twisted together, some time since, upon a charge of neglecting to disclose facts concerning a robbery. This had been done by Strang's orders. Both Bedford and Wentworth had been Mormons, but had seceded and had joined with the McCulloch faction in the late schism. Both had families, and Capt. McBride brought them with their families, and five other families who desired to leave the island, over to Mackinac. The actors in the tragedy were given up to the legal authorities at Mackinac. Strang was the heart and soul as well as the intellect of the Mormon gang, and it is to be strongly hoped that his death will break them up and scatter them abroad. There remains ho man among them capable of wielding Strang's influence or of supplying his place. -- Detroit Advertiser, June 20.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XII.                             Cleveland, Ohio, Tuesday, July 15, 1856.                             No. 167.

From the Beaver Islands -- The Mormon Settlement Broken up.

Chicago, July 11, 1856.        
By the arrival of the steamer Buckeye State, we learn that the Mormon settlement at Beaver Island is at last entirely broken up, through the action of a Mr. Newton from St. Helena Island, and ten or a dozen comrades, all well armed. The secret of the success of this semi-invasion by so small a force against a colony of several hundred, lies in the fact that the people at Beaver Island were glad to have their leaders, Strang and his associates, driven away, and therefore made no resistance. Strang and a few followers escaped into Wisconsin.

Newton is engaged in, an extensive fishery in that neighborhood, and with others has suffered severely by the predatory excursions from the Mormon settlement. He recently lost a pair of very fine fat cattle, and taking a fishing smack and a party well armed he went to Beaver Island in search of them. The hides of the cattle were found hung up to dry, the cattle having been slaughtered. This so exasperated Newton that he resolved to clear the Island, and seems to have accomplished it. About one hundred of the Mormons came here on the Buckeye State and the rest will be sent to Detroit or Buffalo by propellers. Strang will not be likely to revisit the Island.

The party who came here on the Buckeye State were brought by Capt. Chamberlain free of charge. They are generally a company of ignorant, poor people, yet some of them have money, and all are capable of taking care of themaelves. In conversation with some of the most intelligent of them, we learned that they are glad to get away from the Island. While there they lived in fear of their leaders, and if any one attempted to leave, he was prevented by threats or the actual detention of his effects. Misery loves company, and they acted as actual spies upon, each other. They do not pretend to deny the depredations committed from the Island, but throw all the blame on their leaders, where it actually mostly belongs, as they are a deluded people, meriting pity more than punishment.

It was reported here on their arrival that they were all paupers, and the authorities waited upon Captain Chamberlain to inform him that if they were likely to become a public chlarge he would be required to take them back. The poorest among the party, hearing this, declared their willingness to work and intention to take care of themselves, and many said they had rather die than go back and be subject to Strang and his companions. There are some among them who are really needy. A widow without means has a large family, and several families are almost destitute of clothing, but there does not appear to be any necessity for sending them back.

On Friday, several fishing smacks filled with men armed to the teeth, came to Beaver Island and took posession of it. The invaders numbered some 70 or 80, and were headed by a man named Newton and the sheriff of Macinack county. After arresting most of the principal men among the Mormons, the families were all ordered to leave the Island forthwith, and were only permitted to take their luggage and household goods, their cattle, horses, &c., being retained by the invaders. Some of the cattle were killed and others caried off by the mob. About one hundred of the unfortunate settlers came to this city yesterday on the Buckeye State, fifteen families were sent to Detroit on the propeller Prairie State, and Strang, with a few followers, escaped to Berlin, Wisconsin. One of the party who arrived in this city informs us that some twenty families were left on the Island, and that the invaders had stated these should be sent off on the next boat that landed, and they have doubtless gone ere this.

Newton, the leader pf the mob, stated to a passenger on the Buckeye State that he had hired the invaders for the purpose of driving out the Mormons, and was to pay them $1,200 for their services. He justifies his conduct on the ground that the Mormons had stolen from him and his neighbors; that, although all were not guilty, yet the rules and laws of the tribe made it the duty, and it was the practice, to shield the guilty ones, and that any attempt to enforce the law against the Mormon by an outsider was futile. -- There has been a great deal of trouble and ill-feeling existing between the Mormons and those opposed to their faith for several years past, and it has been anticipated for some time past that an appeal to arms would be had. Those who have been driven from their homes are utterly destitute. Their church has been burned, property destroyed, and themselves are homeless wanderers. Those here are witout means of any kind and are entirely dependent upon charity for support. -- Chicaho Tribune.

==> The Mormon Temple at Kirtland is now devoted to the Sunday meetings of the advocates of Spiritualism. Mr. Van Avery lectured there on last Sunday to a crowded house.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. 42.                             Canton, Ohio, Wednesday, August 20, 1856.                             No. 19.

The  Mormons  against  Fremont.

The Mormon of Saturday last, rallies the forces of Joe Smith and polygamy against the people's candidate for the Presidency in the following terms:

"Many of the States are going to be very evenly balanced, and notwithstanding their noise and gasconade, Mormonism can yet control several thousand votes in a number of States of this Union, and we say to our friends, keep your weather-eye open, you may hear from us again. If we do anything, we want deeds, not words.

"We cannot, at any rate, vote for our enemies, and although the bayonets and pistols these fools talk about are all in their brains, yet if these whelps are not stopped [in] their howling, we will give them a pill to swallow that will be difficult of digestion next November."

The enemies whom the Mormons are thus called on to resist, are the Republican party, who have honestly declared against their institution of polygamy; and the friends they are to favor are the Border Ruffians, whose doctrine of Squatter Sovereignty involves the approval and legalization of that institution. How many votes can thus be brought up against [Republican candidate] Fremont, we have no means of knowing precisely, but fancy that there cannot be more than 500 of them. How many intelligent citizens will be induced to give their suffrages to Buchanan by the knowledge that his cause is that of the polygamists of Salt Lake City, remains to be seen. -- Leader.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. 42.                             Canton, Ohio, Wednesday, October 22, 1856.                             No. 28.


The Delaware Free Press, Wilmington, of Oct. 4, says that the Supreme Court of Utah has decided that the organic act extends the common law over Utah, and the act being in the nature of a constitution, the common law therefore overrides all the statutes of the Mormon Legislature. This renders illegal polygamy and the statutes made by order of Brigham Young. How would that decision apply to Kansas and the infamous Shawnee Missouri laws? The common law in Kansas is all that freedom asks. -- Leader.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XIII.                         Defiance, Ohio, Saturday, November 22, 1856.                        No. 18.


Murder of A. W. Babbitt. -- Rumors reached the States some weeks since that Col. Babbitt, a prominent Mormon, and Secretary of Utah Territory, had been murdered by the Indians. An arrival of a Salt Lake train on Sunday, October 26th, at Council Bluffs, confirms the report. Capt. Hawley, who had charge of this train, got the facts at "Sweet Water." which is a station about 200 miles west of Fort Laramie. The Indians had come to the Fort and reported that 12 of them had attacked Col. Babbitt, while one of his men was away, and after the Col. had fired his double-barreled gun and revolvers, one of the Indians crept behind the wagon and tomahawked the Colonel. -- Frank Rowland and Sunderland were killed. -- The Indians said the Colonel fought like a grizzly bear. When at Fort Kearney, Capt. Hawley learned that Major Wharton had in his possession the papers (including a draft of $8,000) and some of his hair. His watch was obtained by a Frenchman from the Indians. Altogether about 18 whites have been killed. Col. Babbitt was formerly a resident of Amherst, Lorain county. His father was a blacksmith in that town, and one of its early settlers. The son was an untutored, active, smart boy -- to use a familiar, was very tounguey -- and when a young man became a convert to Mormon doctrines through the influence of a protracted Mormon meeting, held in Amherst. Mr. Babbitt became a Mormon preacher, having joined the sect at Kirtland, Lake county, and has followed the destiny of this strange people to its present habitation at Salt Lake. Col. Babbitt by his native talent, industry and perseverance had risen to distinction in Utah and was Secretary of the Territory. -- Clev. Herald.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XII.                             Cleveland, Ohio, Saturday, Dec. 13, 1856.                             No. 291.


==> HON. JOSIAH QUINCY, JR.'s LECTURE -- THE MORMONS. -- The Hon. Josiah Quincy, Jr., delivered before the Young Men's Library Association last evening at Chapin's Hall, one of the most interesting discourses which have ever been listened to by a Cleveland audience. The hall was crowded to excess, in spite of the irregularities and indifferent success which has heretofore lately attended the management of the course.

The lecturer bore the marks of great intellectual endowments, manly character, and high cultivation in his personal appearance. With a commanding figure, and somewhat patrician features, Mr. Quincy united a clear and sonorous voice and faultless diction. His subject is not entirely unfamiliar to the public; he, therefore, gave a rapid and yet comprehensive outline of the history of the Latter Day Saints and their Prophet, the great Yankee, Joseph Smith.

About 1813, a Presbyterian clergyman, Solomon Spaulding, a graduate of Dartmouth College, amused himself in writing a purely romantic work in the quaint style of the Scriptures, suggested by the obscure origin of the North American Indians. It supposed the reappearance of Christ to the lost tribes of Israel, a new revelation to them, their wanderings, voyages across the ocean, their arrival in America, their destruction in time, and the burial of the records by the last Prophet, the son of Mormon, in the hill Cumorah, to be preserved for the fullness of time. The book, after amusing his friends, was afterwards taken to Pittsburgh and was about being published by one Patterson when the author died, and through Sidney Rigdon it fell into Joe Smith's hands, who transformed it into the Mormon Bible. The pretended discovery of the plates in the hill near Palmyra, N. Y., their translation by the aid of the great spectacles, Urim & Thummim, the gathering of believers, the settlements in Missouri, their persecutions, the building of Nauvoo, the transformation of the Vermont Yankee into the great Prophet, Civil Ruler and Military Chief of this singular people, were interspersed with many interesting passages of novelty and witty comment.

The location of the Mormons at Kirtland, in Lake county, seems to have escaped the lecturer, a fact of which many of his hearers are well reminded of at times by ticklers of the Kirtland Bank, Jo Smith, President, Sidney Rigdon, Cashier. Nor did he mention the first persecution from the Gentiles of Hiram, Portage county, where the Prophet was once dragged from his bed, and after being severely handled, tarred and feathered.

The most interesting passage in the lecture, was Mr. Quincy's very amusing narrative of a day spent at Nauvoo, in May 1844. He was with his party on a voyage up the Mississippi, and was received and entertained in the most gracious manner by the Prophet who not only escorted them to all his public buildings and museums of the mummies whose inscriptions he had deciphered, but preached a sermon to an extemporaneous audience for their amusement and edification. The Yankee displayed itself in the remark which closed the mummy show, that "persons to whom it was opened usually left a quarter with his mother," but the man with the head to contrive, voice to persuade and hand to execute, was testified by his wonderful influence and its great results. His martyrdom occurred about forty days after this visit. The exodus to the Great Salt Lake Valley, and the description of Utah, its scenery, city, domestic institutions and present relations to the country and the Union, were described and commented upon in an instructive manner....

For the future destiny of this singular religious society, Mr. Quincy had no serious apphenensions. The domestic institution of polygamy would soon be found as incompatible; with the happiness of man as it was with the dignity of woman, and there were already signs of its speedy abolition. The Mormons have applied for admission to the Union and that will be granted soon on the same terms as other States. The people at Deseret number about 30,000 souls. But the missionaries are in every country on the Globe. It is said they number in Great Britain alone 30,000 converts and throughout the World not less than 200,000...

The lecturer closed with the prediction that should, in another century, the question be asked what American citizen had exercised the greatest influence over the minds and destiny of a large portion of his fellow countrymen in the 19th century, it is not impossible and it is altogether very probable that the answer will justly be the Prophet, Priest, and Ruler, Joseph Smith.

Notes: (forthcoming)


ns. Vol. III.                        Columbus, Ohio, Tuesday, December 23, 1856.                        No. 176.

Polygamy  in  Utah.

Judge Drummond, of the 1st District in Utah, has charged the Grand Jury against polygamy. It clearly comes within the provisions of the United States statute against lewdness, and is punishable with imprisonment for from ten years down to six months, and a fine of a thousand dollars. -- Journal.

Note: This report was rather old "news," by the time it reached the eastern states. The grand jury referred to was convened at Genoa, in what became Nevada, in July of 1856. Drummond's actual citation appears to have been taken from the "revised statutes of Utah Territory" and not from federal law.


Vol. XII.                             Cleveland, Ohio, Wednesday, Dec. 31, 1856.                             No. 305.

News  from  the  Sandwich  Islands.

...We read in the Advertiser... A lecture on "Mormonism" was lately delivered at the Bethel [Chapel], Honolulu, by Mr. J. Hyde, Jr., who had recently arrived from Utah Territory. There has rarely been such a crowded audience in Honolulu. What gave additional interest to the lecture was the fact that the lecturer has, till recently, been an officer in the Mormon church, but has renounced the faith altogether, having been fully convinced of its absurdity. At the close of the lecture, a member of the Mormon community had the impudence to get up before the assembly and charge the lecturer with horse-stealing, which, whether the charge was true or not, was deemed altogether out of place. The lecturer, however, explained the charge to the satisfaction of his audience.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XIII.                             Cleveland, Ohio, Friday, Jan. 2, 1857.                             No. 1.

Judge Drummond and the Mormons.

We published the othor day an extract from a charge alleged to have been delivered lately by Judge Drummond, of Utah, before a grand jury of that territory. Its authenticity has been since questioned, and some argument has been advanced to prove that such a charge could not have been made, as it was inconsistent with the general law of the United States. However that may be, we received yesterday from Judge Drummond himself, via California, a communication furnishing us with an extract from his charge precisely the same as that we published. He asks the favor of its publication in our columns, as he desires to set himself right on the vexed question of polygamy, which he apprehends will one day cause this nation more trouble than any other. Without coinciding in this opinion, we have merely to say that Judge Drummond's wish having been anticipated, we do not republish the extract. We take the opportunity, however, to commend his firmness, decision and honesty in the performance of his duty, and hope that it will prove of some service hereatfter. As to the difficulties attending this matter of polygamy, we think if they are not unwisely agitated the evil will eventually cure itself in less time than it can be cured by outward pressure. Already we find that its effects are painfully deprecated by those who sulffer from them. And it is certain that multitudes of the miserable women would gladly escape if they could.

There is no reason to fear that any of the adjoining territory will adopt or participate in the follies of Utah; and as that becomes subjected to the other and better influences, it will be resorted to the decencies of christendom.

Enclosed with Judge Drummond's communication are a number of choice extracts from current publications about Mormon affairs, from which we select a few items that may prove quite interesting in this meridian. A writer from Fillmore city, Utah, furnishes the following little historical and physiological sketch, exhibiting the political standing, personal qualifications and marital responsibilities -- to say nothing of those which are paternal -- of some of the prominent politicians of the territory.

Of the memhers of the council, 13 patrons, each has the number of wives respectively affixed to his name.

H. C. Kimhall, President of Council -- 57
Daniel H, Wells, Councilman, (cross-eyed) -- 19
Albert Carrington, (cripple and near-sighted) -- 21
Orson Pratt, (cripple and near-sighted) -- 7
Wilford Woodruff, (cripple and near-sighted) -- 12
John Stoker, (cripple and near-sighted) -- 3
Lorin Farr, (cripple and near-sighted) -- 3
Leonard. E. Harrington, (cripple and near-sighted) -- 3
Benjamin F. Johnson, (cripple and near-sighted) -- 3
Isaac Morley (72 years old) -- 6
John A. Ray: (from Texas) -- 2
George A. Smith, (cripple and near-sighted) -- 5
Grand total, men 13, women, 171

House of Representatives, 26 members:
J. M. Grant, Speaker, has -- 6
W. W, Phelps, (printer of Morgan's book) -- 7
A. P. Rockwood, (an old man) -- 3
Edwin D. Wooley, (a small man) -- 5
T. W. Cummine, (cripple) -- 10
Hosea Stout, (lawyer, from Kentucky -- 3 dead) -- 1
G. W. Richards, (young and handsome lawyer) -- 15
Jessie C. Little, (lawyer from Boston, Mass,) -- 3
Wm. Snow, (Vermont laborer) -- 3
P. H. Young, (brother of Brigham -- tailor) -- 6
C. V. Spencer, (of Mass., quite small) has but -- 2
Ezra. T. Benson, (old and homely) -- 15
James C. Snow, (quite poor) -- 3
Aaron Johnson, (has three sisters, and altogether) -- 6
Lorenzo H. Hatch, (wagon maker) -- 2
John G. Bigler, (farmer) -- 10
George Peacock, (farmer) -- 10
John Eldridge, (phrenologist -- two dead) -- 1
Isaac C. Haight, (coal digger) -- 12
Jesse N. Smith, (lawyer) -- 2
John D. Parker, (old and deaf) -- 3
Jesse Hobson, (ox teamster) -- 10
W. C. Wright, (hotel keeper) -- 6
James Brown, (dairyman) -- 7
Enoch Reese, (farmer, etc.) -- 2
W. A. Hickman, (one of the Danites) -- 8

To which add officers of the House, to wit:
Thomas Bullock, (Clerk, and an Englishman) -- 4
W. Grimshaw, (Assistant clerk, and an Englishman) -- 5
Chandler Holbrook, (Foreman, and deaf) -- 4
Jacob F, Hutchinson, (Messenger) -- 2
Joel H. Johnson, (Chaplin) -- 7
Total.................................................................................... 22

To which add 68 for the number of Governor Young's wives, and we have the whole number of females thus represented by the members of the Legislature, officers of same, and his excellency, amounting to 420; or, in other words, 40 men have 420 wives.

One of the most remarkable of the peculiarities of Mormonism consists in the success with which it is attended in Europe. In England, especially proselytes have been very numerous, and Utah has received considerable portion of its profitable dupes from that country. We learn also that in the Scandinavian countries their missionaries found a fruitful soil, and gained thousands of converts, many among the agricultural classes. From Denmark some of these apostles to the Gentiles journeyed to Hamburgh, where they firmly established themselves and have already written a German translation of the Book of Mormon. They have also penetrated Saxony, and have succeeded in founding a society of adherents in the city of Dresden, carefully avoiding any collision with the police, who are ever on the alert for new religious sects, suspecting every new doctrine to be a mere cloak for some political plot. The apostles seem to have plenty of funds at their command, apparantly derived from England, with which they assist the needy among their proselytes. Several families have recently left Dresden for Liverpool, where they will meet other converts, and continue their journey to "the New Jerusalem in the great interior salt basin of America." Recently the Mormon community in the city of Dresden numbered sixty members, males and females, belonging to various grades of society, some of them persons of high intellectual endowments. The greater part of these new-born "saints" are making preparations to forsake the thraldom of the heathens" and journey to Utah.

The following are some of the selections of the "Sayings of Brigham Young, the prophet on a variety of collateral topics." He still storms and raves, and hurls haughty defiance against all the outside worlds:


"True we have more wives than one, and what of that? They have their scores of thousands of prostitutes; we have none. But polygamy they are unconstitutionally striving to prevent; when they will accomplish their object is not for me to say. They have already presented a resolution in congress that no man in any of the Territories of the United States shall be allowed to have more than one wife, under a penalty not exceeding five years' imprisonment and five hundred dollars fine. How will they get rid of this awful evil in Utah?"


"They will have to expend about three hundred millions for building a prison, for We must all go to prison, and after they have expended that amount for a prison, and roofed it overfrom the summit of the rocky mountains to the summit of the Sierre Nevada, we will dig out and go preaching through the world. (A voice on the stand: "What will become of the women? -- Will they go to prison with us?") Brother Heber seems concerned about the women's going with us, for we shall be here together. This is a little amusing."


"Mormonism is true and all hell cannot overthrow it. All the devil's servants on the earth may do all they can, and, as Brother Clinton has just said, after twenty-six years faithful operation and exertion by our enemies, including the times when Joseph had scarcely a man to stand by him, and when the persecution was as severe on him as it ever' was in the world what have they accomplished?"

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. 42.                             Canton, Ohio, Jan. 28, 1857.                             No. 42.


SCHISM AMONG THE MORMONS. -- Elder John Hyde, hitherto one of the leading spirits among the Latter Day Saints, who was sent to the Sandwich Islands to convert the heathen to the many wife system, has renounced the Mormon faith, and is engaged in exposing its fallacies. Among other charges, that of falsifying the census of the Territory is made. The ex-elder says that there are not much over half as many inhabitants in Utah as the census returns would indicate. Names of deceased persons, names of disciples who never came there, and those who have long since gone away, have been retained to swell the aggregate to the required seventy thousand.

Note: For a report of John Hyde's initial tilt against the Mormons in Hawaii, see the Oct. 25, 1856 issue of The Polynesian. The Ohio Repository editor evidently gleaned his information on Hyde from either the San Francisco Western Standard of Nov. 29, 1856 or from some other California paper.


Vol. 42.                             Canton, Ohio, March 4, 1857.                             No. 47.


A correspondent of the Chicago Tribune denies that statement that slavery does not exist among the Mormons. He says their laws sanction it, and their religion inculcates the idea that the Africans are an inferior race of beings. They do not own many negroes, but hold in bondage not less than four hundred Indian children under the pretence of apprenticeship.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XIII.                          Cleveland, Ohio, Wednesday, March 25, 1857.                          No. 71.

Interesting  State  of  Affairs  in  Utah.

A letter has been received at Washington from W. W .Drummond, United States Supreme Judge in Utah Territory, by the Administration. It gives a sad and deplorable history of matters in that Territory. The following is taken from the letter:

The leading men of the church are more traitorous than ever. Only a few dare agree all the papers, records, dockets, and nine hundred volumes of the laws, were taken out of the Supreme Court Clerk's office and burned. And this is not the only instance of the kind. I say to you again, and through you to the President, it is impossible for us to enforce the laws in this Territory. Every man here holds his life at the will of Brigham Young; and here we are without protection. I am firmly of opinion that Babbitt was murdered by Mormons under direction of Brigham Young and not by Indians. Murder is a common thing here; and Mormons cannot be punished with a Mormon jury, witnesses, officers, and Governor to pardon. It is cruel, and must not be endured. A man, not member of the church, is murdered, robbed, castrated or prisoned quickly for questioning the authority of the church. Persons are now in the penitentiary, convicted before the Probate Judge, who are wholly innocent of any crime. Is there any other country where this abuse would be endured? Let all, then, take hold another out one of the most treasonable organizations in America.

The administration have had the matter under serious consideration, and will soon appoint a Governor, I understand, who will take sufficient military force into that Territory to carry out the laws to the fullest extent.

Note: This report was reproduced from the New York Herald of March 20, 1857.


Vol. XIII.                          Cleveland, Ohio, Thursday, April 2, 1857.                          No. 78.

The  Inhabitants  of  Great  Salt  Lake  City.

Dorby and Jackson, of New York, have recently published a work by Austin N. Ward entitled "The Husband in Utah, or Sights and Scenes among the Mormons." The history appears to be authentic, and, affords the plainest account of the blasphemies, adulteries, and other abominations of Mormonism. Mr. Ward gives the following sketch of the inhabitants of the Great Salt Lake City:

One thing that, strikes you as remarkable, is the assemblage of different nations to be seen in the streets, Gibralter itself can scarcely be more favored in this respect. Every nation in Europe, and every State in the Union has representatives here. The tall Norwegian, fresh from his native pine forests; the Dane, probably a descendant of some sea-king of old; the blue-eyed German, meet, and probably salute you in a language whose strange unintelligible gibberish has no more meaning to your ears than the gabble of so many geese. These generally retain their national costume for a time, but sooner or later adopt that of the Mormons, which varies little from the usual style of English dress. Brigham Young, the patriarch, attempted to lead the fashions, and set out with a slouched yellow hat, much too large even for his large head, green frock coat, and pants large in size and loose in fit, white socks, and slippers. He was followed by some of the elders, though the young men and dandies were so intolerably wicked as to prefer imitating the people of the world.

Zion, like other cities, has its fashionable streets. In these some are dressed with foppish extravagance, and a great many in clothes of expensive material. You are tempted to wonder how so much finery ever found its way to such an out-of-the-way place.

Of course, the ladies in personal adornment must keep up with their husbands and lovers. The wives and daughters of the rich dress expensively, with good taste and effect. Many of them are attractive in appearance, and some would produce a decided sensation in any European drawing-room. These were objects of especial attention to the United States officers and soldiers, which gave great umbrage to the Mormons.

Many of the poorer class of women work in the fields. These adopted a costume something like the Bloomer, consisting of wide pants, gathered with a band around the ankle, short skirts, and a broad-brimmed straw hat of home manufacture, yet all the better for that. They were adorned with knots of ribbon, and being rather jauntily worn on one side, had altogether a pleasant effect.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. 43.                             Canton, Ohio, April 22, 1857.                             No. 2.

Resignation of a United States Judge.

The Hon. W. W. Drummond, one of the Justices of the supreme court of Utah Territory, has forwarded his resignation to Washington. He thus sets forth his reasons for resigning:

In the first place, Brigham Young, the governor of Utah Territory, is the acknowledged head of the "Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints," commonly called "Mormons"; and, as such head, the Mormons look to him, and to him alone, for the law by which they are to be governed: therefore no law of Congress is by them considered binding in any manner.

Secondly. I know that there is a secret oath-bound organization among all the male members of the church to resist the laws of the country, and to acknowledge no law save the law of the "Holy Priesthood," which comes to the people through Brigham Young direct from God; he, Young, being the vicegerent of God and prophetic successor of Joseph Smith, who was the founder of this blind and treasonable organization.

Thirdly I am fully aware that there is a set of men, set apart by special order of the Church, to take both the lives and property of persons who may question the authority of the church, the names of whom I will promptly make known at a future time.

Fourthly. That the records, papers, &c., of the supreme court have been destroyed by order of the church, with the direct knowledge and approbation of Governor B. Young, and the federal officers grossly insulted for presuming to raise a single question about the treasonable act.

Fifthly. That the federal officers of the Territory are constantly insulted, harassed, and annoyed by the Mormons, and for these insults there is no redress.

Sixthly. That the federal officers are daily compelled to hear the form of the American government traduced, the chief executives of the nation, both living and dead, slandered and abused from the masses, as well as from all the leading members of the Church, in the most vulgar, loathsome, and wicked manner that the evil passions of men can possibly conceive.

Note: The above is just a partial extract from Judge Drummond's March 30, 1857 letter of resignation.


The  Ohio  State  Journal.

Vol. XLVII.                 Columbus, Ohio, Wednesday, April 29, 1857.                 No. 5.

The  Saints  in  Utah.


To the Hon. Jer. S. Black, Att'y Gen. of the U. States, Washington City, D. C.

MY DEAR SIR: -- As I have concluded to resign the office of Justice of the Supreme Court of the Territory of Utah, which position I accepted in A. D. 1854, under the administration of President Pierce, I deem it due to the public to give some of the reasons why I do so. In the first place, Brigham Young, the governor of Utah Territory, is the acknowledged head of the "Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints," commonly called "Mormons," and, as such head, the Mormons look to him, and to him alone, for the law by which they are to be governed; therefore no law of Congress is by them considered binding in any manner.

Secondly. I know that there is a secret oath-bound organization among all the male members of the church [to resist the laws of the country, and] to acknowledge no law save the law of the "Holy Priesthood," which comes to the people through Brigham Young, direct from God; he, Young, being the vicegerent of God and prophetic successor of Joseph Smith, who was the founder of this blind and treasonable organization.

Thirdly I am fully aware that there is a set of men, set apart by special order of the Church, to take both the lives and property of persons who may question the authority of the church, (the names of whom I will promptly make known at a future time).

Fourthly. That the records, papers, &c., of the supreme court have been destroyed by order of the church, with the direct knowledge and approbation of Governor B. Young, and the federal officers grossly insulted for presuming to raise a single question about the treasonable act.

Fifthly. That the federal officers of the Territory are constantly insulted, harassed, and annoyed by the Mormons, and for these insults there is no redress.

Sixthly. That the federal officers are daily compelled to hear the form of the American government traduced, the chief executives of the nation, both living and dead, slandered and abused from the masses, as well as from all the leading members of the Church, in the most vulgar, loathsome, and wicked manner that the evil passions of men can possibly conceive.

Again: That after Moroni Green had been convicted in the district court before my colleague, Judge Kinney, of an assault with intent to commit murder, and afterwards, on appeal to the Supreme Court, the judgment being affirmed and the said Green being sentenced to the Penitentiary, Brigham Young gave a full pardon to the said Green before he reached the Penitentiary; also, that the said Governor Young pardoned a man by the name of Baker, who had been tried and sentenced to ten years' imprisonment in the Penitentiary, for the murder of a dumb boy by the name of Whitehouse, the proof showing one of the most aggravated cases of murder that I ever knew being tried; and to insult the court and government officers, this man Young took this pardoned criminal with him, in proper person, to church on the next Sabbath after his conviction. Baker, in the meantime, having received a full pardon from Gov. Brigham Young. These two men were Mormons.

On the other hand, I charge the Mormons, and Governor Young in particular, with imprisoning five or six young men from Missouri and Iowa, who are now in the penitentiary of Utah, without those men having violated any criminal law in America. But they were anti-Mormons; poor, uneducated young men on their way for California; but because they emigrated from Illinois, Iowa, or Missouri, and passed by Great Salt Lake City, they were indicted by a Probate Court, and most brutally and inhumanly dealt with, in addition to being summarily incarcerated in the saintly prison of the Territory of Utah. I also charge Gov. Young with constantly interfering with the federal courts, directing the Grand Jury whom to indict and whom not; and after the judges charge the Grand Juries as to their duties, that this man Young, invariably has some member of the Grand Jury advised in advance as to his will in relation to their labors, and that his charge thus given is the only charge known, obeyed, or received by all the Grand Juries of the federal courts of Utah Territory

Again, sir, after a careful and mature investigation, I have been compelled to come to the conclusion, heart-rending and sickening as it may be, that Capt. John W. Gunnison, and his party of eight others, were murdered by the Indians in 1853, under the orders, advice, and direction of the Mormons; that my illustrious and distinguished predecessor, Hon. Leonidas Shaver, came to his death by drinking poisoned liquors, given to him under the order of the leading men of the Mormon Church in Great Salt Lake City; that the late Secretary of the Territory, A. W. Babbitt, was murdered on the plains by a band of Mormon marauders, under the particular and special order of Brigham Young, Heber C. Kimball, and J. M. Grant, and not by the Indians, as reported by the Mormons themselves; and that they were sent from Salt Lake City for that purpose, and that only; and as members of the Danite Band they were bound to do the will of B. Young as the head of the Church, or forfeit their own lives.

These reasons, with many others that I might give, which would be too heart-rending to insert in this communication, have induced me to resign the office of Justice of the territory of Utah, and again return to my adopted State of Illinois. My reason, sir, for making this communication thus public is, that the democratic party, with which I have always strictly acted, is the party now in power, and therefore is the party the should now be held responsible for the treasonable and disgraceful state of affairs that now exists in Utah territory. I could, sir, if necessary, refer to a cloud of witnesses to attest the reason I have given, and the charges, bold as they are, against those despots who rule with an iron hand their hundred thousand souls in Utah, and their two hundred thousand souls out of that notable territory, but shall not do so, for the reason that the lives of such gentlemen as I should designate in Utah and in California would not be safe for a single day.

In conclusion, sir, I have to say that, in my career as Justice of the Supreme Court of Utah territory, I have the consolation of knowing that I did my duty; that neither threats nor intimidations drove me from that pat; upon the other hand, I am pained to say that I accomplished little good while there; that the judiciary is only treated as a farce. The only rule of law by which the infatuated followers of this curious people will be governed, is the law of the church, and that emanates from Governor Brigham Young, and him alone.

I do believe that, if there was a man put in office as Governor of that territory, who is not a member of the church (Mormon,) and he supported with a sufficient military aid, that much good would result from such a course; but, as the territory is now governed, and as it has been since the administration of Mr. Fillmore, at which time Young received his appointment as Governor, it is noon-day madness and folly to attempt to administer the law in that territory. The officers are insulted, harassed, and murdered for doing their duty, and not recognizing Brigham Young as the only law-giver and law-maker on earth. Of this every man can bear incontestable evidence who has been willing to accept an appointment in Utah; and I assure you, sir, that no man would be willing to risk his life and property in that territory after once trying the sad experiment.

With an earnest desire that the present administration will give due and timely aid to the officers that may be so unfortunate as to accept situations in that territory, and that the withering curse which now rests upon this nation by virtue of the peculiar and heart-rending in. situations of the territory of Utah may be speedily removed, to the honor and credit of our happy country. I now remain your obedient servant,
W. W. DRUMMOND,     
Justice Utah Territory.     
March 30, A. D. 1857.

Note: Judge Drummond's March 30, 1857 letter of resignation was published in the April 14, 1857 issue of the New York Times.


Vol. XIII.                          Cleveland, Ohio, Monday, May 4, 1857.                          No. 105.

Mormonism  vs.  Democracy.

Mormonism seems now to be a subject, that at this or some day not far distant, will agitate the minds of our American people. How far this agitation may extend, or what division the great minds of our country may make, remains yet to be revealed. From the peculiar relation existing between these "Latter Day Saints," and the heads of government on the Eastern continent, we could not expect this agitation to remain entirely with us at home. Upon the Western continent exists a republic, whose free institutions, and mighty power have been felt across the Atlantic -- while America progresses Europe trembles and each revolving event is scanned with eagerness to find some hand to point our road to ruin. Thus their sympathies were placed in the contest of '56 which resulted in the election of James Buchanan. If their sympathy was enlisted in this issue, what else could be expected in one in which would be involved their favorite institution of "barbarism" -- favorite, not because in accordance with their religious belief, but because of the adversity of interest between Mormonism and our Republic. Already it seems this Mormon question has been raised in the House of Representatives by Mr. Morrill, of Vermont, in a speech delivered Feb. 27, 1857, in which he gives a brief of the laws and customs of Utah: together with a broadside upon the Democratic party -- and administration, standing as they do, upon the "Cincinnati Platform," we quote the following, and also the Territorial law. The President and rulers of the Mormon Church have already sought shelter in the bosom of the Democratic party, by their proclamation of Aug. 14th 1856, They declare "The Democratic party in Cincinnati which nominated James Buchanan, published the following resolution:

Resolved, That congress has no power under the Constitution to interfere with, or control the domestic institutions of the several States, and that all such States are at the sole and proper judges of everything appertaining to their own affairs not prohibited by the Constitution. This, say the Mormons, is the principle of the Democratic party, to which they have extended to Territories as well as States, and the doctrine of sovereignty apply to us in the desert as well as to the settlers in Kansas and Nebraska. True, this is the ground held by the Democratic party -- the doctrine of absolute State sovereignty, they hold to be a leading principle which united the States in a common union when the Constitution was framed, and has since proved a bond of union growing stronger and stronger as each year proved in beauty and power -- they blush not when it is repeated, even should its echo come from the Rocky Mountains. It is in conformity with our republican form of government, that each State shall regulate its own internal and domestic affairs by laws of its own -- which laws shull not conflict with the Constitution and laws of the United States. Thus far we have taken a Democratic view. Both parties Republican and Democratic stand, or profess to stand upon the same Constitution, and now we propose to show, from the citations of Mr, Morrill, himself, to the laws of Utah, that her admission as State is an impossibility while she holds these laws.

It matters not what feelings may be entertained by Republicans or Democrats towards the Mormons and their institutions if their laws are not in conformity with the Constitution she must forever remain a Territory. Thus it expressly provides "all laws passed by the Governor and Legislative Assembly of any Territory shall be submitted to the Congress of the United States, and if disapproved shall be null and of no effect." As for the religious notions of the Mormons we shall only say, their admission as a State would be a matter of some doubt even were polygamy the only offence of which they are guilty.

But their peculiar laws are what we wish now to consider.

Sec. 10 of the Constitution of the United States expressly provides "That no State shall in time of peace, without the consent of Congress, keep troops or ships of war, &c., engage in any war, unless actually invaded, or in such eminent danger as will not admit of delay." -- To this provision there is but one exception, and that a case of actual invasion, or the immediate danger of such. The Federal Government is amply able, nay more is willing to protect their subjects, wherever they may be, against the inroads and assaults of enemies, whether civilized or barbarous. What means then the enrollment, equipment -- and legions of the Mormons -- deriving their commissions from none save their Governor -- subject to his absolute command -- acknowledging no higher power -- nay-- openly bidding defiance to law, and bolstering their strength and ability to resist the same -- wishing the Union scattered to the four winds, and its Presidents in the abodes of darkness. Yet this, all this is done while Utah is a Territory.

Again -- The Constitution provides, "That no State shall pass any law impairing the obligations of contracts."

This is expressly prohibited in all our States; and are territories under the immediate supervision of Congress exempt from the power of this sweeping clause? When laws, thus impairing the obligations of contracts have received the sanction of the Legislature of a territory, can aught but their repudiation be expected when that territory shall ask to become a sovereign State? Let us cite the law of Utah given by Mr. Morrell: "If an elder is willing to preach the gospel without scrip or purse, it is none of your business what he does with the money he has borrowed from you. The doctrine of Brother Joseph was, and now is, that not one dollar you possess is your own, and if the Lord wants it, let it go, it is none of your business what he does with it." Thus the whole Mormon wealth is in the hands of Brigham Young and his elders; the weak are at the mercy of the strong and no power can enforce justice, when justice is demanded. But to make still stronger this net of absoluteism, there is in existence in Utah, a law prohibiting even a demand on what is justly due. Were these the records of dark ages, we might expect to see Utah standing with the sovereign States -- an independent nation -- where cruelty and barbarism were a nation's highest honors. But in this enlightened day and free lands, our Constitution will spurn her ass an adder. She repudiates our laws and the safeguard of our Union. It is provided that Congress has power under the Constitution to make all needful regulations for her territories, while they remain territories. Utah is a territory and the following is an extract from her laws.

"Be it enacted by the Governor and Legislative Assembly of the Territory of Utah, That all questions of laws, the meanings of writings, other than laws and admissible of testimony, shall be decided by the court, and no laws nor parts of laws, shall be read, cited, argued or adopted in any trial, other then passed by the Governor and Legislative Assembly of this territory."

Let the gentleman reconcile this with the Constitution and the oath administered to all who came within its bounds, whether Presidents or Congressmen, and he can not fail to see the impossibility of the grounds he so much fears.

Again, the Federal Government gives to each State a republican form of government -- none others are included -- all others are excluded. Utah's is as far from republican as the east from the west; and, again we repeat under the constitution as it now exists, whether the administration be democratic or otherwise, her admission as a State, is impossible. But the gentleman asks what shall be done -- yes, what shall be done?

Forbearance has ever been a leading principle in the administration of our government. -- Because a Democratic administration has not taken immediate measures to sweep from off the earth the whole fraternity of Mormons, does it necessarily follow that that administration has sanctioned or given countenance to their proceedings?

Moral suasion has been the power employed to correct the refractory spirit of other States -- should it fail here I doubt not but a Democratic administration would be prompt in adopting such measures as would result in the execution of the Federal laws even if backed with bayonets.   H. W. B.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. 43.                             Canton, Ohio, Wednesday, May 6, 1857.                             No. 4.

Iniquity always finds a Hard Road to Travel in the End.

The Democratic party have rested all their arguments on "Squatter Sovereignty." What can be fairer, than to "let the people of Kansas choose for themselves what kind og government they shall have. Congress has no right to legislate for the Territories." All this was so plausible, that many of our voters gulped it down as a glorious Democratic principle -- together with Buchanan and Free Kansas.

Next we find the leaders claiming that the election of Buchannan, as an endorsement of Slavery extension by the people -- and the Judges of the Supreme Court kept back the decision on the Dred Scot case, to correspond with principles claimed to have been sanctioned by the people.

Meantime, up turns Gov. Brigham Young's case. Mormonism sets itself up against the power of the United States. The Constitution of the United States does not forbid Brigham Young having sixty wives -- and other Mormons as many as they choose. The Cincinnati Platform says nothing against it, nor against the Danite Band. What is sauce for the Goose is sauce for the Gander. What right has the United States to interfere with Brigham Young's State of Deseret, according to their own doctrine of "Squatter Sovereignty?" Ah! but they have driven out the United States officers from the Territory, and have destroyed and burned the public Records. Brigham Young claims that he is God's Vicegerent on earth, and sets up a higher law than any other on earth. His edicts are to be obeyed, even to the shedding of blood. No matter, according to the Democratic doctrine of Squatter Sovereignty, the Mormons must choose just such a Government as pleases them. But notwithstanding all that, the Administration is in dreadful labor about Utah. Will Mr. Buchanan send troops and give the Mormons drum head Court Martial? What else can he do? Or must Mormon outrages continue with impunity?

The great Democratic party are wofully [ensnared] in their own traps. Had they been [-----st], they might have been saved from such conflicts. But in that case Buchanan could not have been elected.

Notes: (forthcoming)


The  Ohio  State  Journal.

Vol. XLVII.                     Columbus, Ohio, Wednesday, May 6, 1857.                    No. 6.

"Manifest  Destiny."

Gen. Cass used to be regarded as the High Priest of the Manifest Destiny doctrine; but since his appointment to the State Department, the late Attorney General, Caleb Cushing, has entered the lists as its defender. On the occasion of his recent public reception at his old home, Mr. Cushing delivered a highly finished and eloquent oration upon the destiny of the United States. In the whole of his discourse there is not a word said about the canker at the root, the worm at the core of our Republican institutions -- Slavery. Heretofore our growth has been, in spite of our local disease, but which recent events have made a national one....

Mr. Cushing talks glibly and grandly of America, "wherein God wills that we should work out his eternal plans," as though he, like a second Joseph Smith, had a special revelation from the Almighty. We do not claim to have any such revelation. It is enough for us to know the revelation which He has made in His Word, and to know that His promises are always coupled with a command. Man, in one sense, makes his own destiny... The fathers of the Republic never designed that the Republic should become a land of filibusters and "Border Ruffians," land stealers and oppressors of the weak and defenseless -- whose will is law, where right is crucified, and might is enthroned as king. They sought no such destiny for their posterity.... The recent acts of our government in Kansas shows that the spirit which animated the fathers no longer governs our rulers. The lust of dominion has usurped the seats of power, and Right, Justice and Humanity are scored as obsolete ideas. If the nation indorses the policy of those who sit in her high places, it needs no prophet's vision or ghost to come from the grave to tell that our "manifest destiny" is one of shame and reproach -- not one of glory and honor. No true patriot would wish for our land the reputation that we are a nation of Border Ruffians; but we fear we are rapidly acquiring it. Unless we return to the teachings of the fathers, this destiny awaits us. It is as true of a nation as of a man, that "as a man soweth, so also shall he reap."

THE MORMON PRIESTHOOD. -- A correspondent of the National Intelligencer, who resided for a year in the Salt Lake Valley, in the capacity of a mail agent, thus describes the Mormon hierarchy:

The Mormon priesthood is a consolidated system of police, compounded from the old Aaronic, Levitical, and Melchesideck priesthoods, and is known by the name of "The Church of the Latter Day Saints of Jesus Christ." Brigham Young is the Prophet, Priest, and King of the Saints. His will is law; he is the vicegerent of God, deriving authority directly from Him, which is absolute whenever he says "thus saith the Lord." Brigham stands upon the shoulders of his two councilors; they stand upon the shoulders of the other ten apostles; they stand upon the shoulders of the high priests; they stand upon the shoulders of the bishops; they stand upon the shoulders of the captains of fifties and seventies; they stand upon the shoulders of the elders; they stand upon the shoulders of lay members of the church; they stand upon the shoulders of the laboring masses who till the soil which supports the pile. From his towering height Brigham issues forth his edicts to the people, and with the scorpion lash of his serpent tongue he lashes every one beneath him into silence. “No one was ever known to dissent from his will.” The entire fraternity is bound together by oaths the most solemn, to support the church and nothing but the church, and every man, woman and child is constituted a police officer, always on duty, and required to report to the head whenever anything of sufficient interest occurs to justify it.

Note: The notion of America as a land of future promise, wherein the development and expansion of the United States is viewed as part of a Divine plan, was a powerful one -- reaching back to the religious views of the first New England Puritans and their progeny. See, for example, the 1785 pamphlet, The Golden Age. Those proponents of an American "Manifest Destiny" of the mid-19th century, who did not condemn slavery, were essentially enlisting the authority of God in expanding a state built upon human bondage. It is easy to see why many writers of the time saw such an American vision as being at odds with the biblical story of the Israelite escape from slavery in Egypt to the original "promised land."


ns. Vol. I.                        St. Clairsville, Ohio, Thursday, May 07, 1857.                        No. 19.

A  Sketch  of  Jo Smith.


Thirty years ago there lived near Palmyra, Wayne Co, New York, an obscure individual, whose name since become familiar to the world. That individual was Jo Smith, the Mormon Prophet. A sketch of this person's life is interesting, not because we find anything in his character to admire, but because it presents to our view the origin of Mormonism -- one of the most extravagant humbugs that the world ever witnessed. The idea of a new religion originating in a person possessing less than ordinary abilities, and rapidly increasing in number till both the Old and the New World contain multitudes of proselytes is a subject of much interest. To give the reader an idea of the origin of this singular sect is the object of the present essay.

The family of which Jo was a member was large, remarkable neither for intelligence nor industry. His father possessed a visionary mind, and cherished the notion that a prophet would arise out of his family. -- It is hard to say why he should arrive at this conclusion, yet the means of accomplishing his wishes were evidently in his own power, for it was soon announced to the world that a brother of Jo was the expected prophet. It was evident that this appointment was not made by divine authority, else so serious a mistake could not have occurred, for the prophet suddenly died of surfeit of eating too much raw turnip! The hopes of the ambitions father were not to be blasted by this unfortunate occurrence; for it was soon known to the people of Stafford street, where they resided, that he was the successor of his brother.

In order to obtain a clear idea of the prophet's career, it will be neccessary to refer to his early years. The boyhood of Jo was passed on the farm with his father. During the winter months he attended the district school, where he acquired the little knowledge which he possessed. He is remembered by his school mates as being idle, and somewhat vicious, and was regarded by all as a very dull scholar. As a young man, his prospects were anything but cheering. He was engaged in no steady employment, and might often have been found lounging around the bar-rooms of Palmyra, in company with persons as worthless and idle as himself. This was the general character of Jo Smith up to the time of prophetic career, and no one surmised that he was to become the founder of a new religion, or an inglorious martyr at Nauvoo.

Jo's prophetic powers were first directed to the acquisition of wealth, and money-digging soon engaged the attention of the family, and a part of the neighborhood. -- Night after night these fanatics labored, urged on by vissions of untold wealth. Excavations were made in hillside and valley; but Fortune, the fickle goddess, refused to smile upon them. Their golden visions were fruitless; the prophecy was false.

At this state of affairs a circumstance occurred which retrieved the waning hopes of the prophet, and gave a new direction to his genius. This was the discovery of the Book of Mormon, or the Mormon Bible. This event proved to be the orgin of Mormonism -- the feeble germ which produced the tree of giant proportions, whose branches have extended over a large portion of the known world. It was pretended by the prophet that this record was found on a hill, below the surface of the ground, written on plates of gold. This being transcribed by a mysterious process became the work now known as the Mormon Bible. This is the fabulous account of its orgin. Its authentic history is as follows: -- It was written by a Vermont clergyman named Spalding. It was intended merely as a work of fiction, and was entitled "The Manuscript Found." The author died before its circulation, and after various fortunes it fell into the hands of Jo Smith, who at once made it accessary to his ambitious scheme.

It is probable that this book owes its origin to that sentiment which prompts us to venerable old manuscript which contain an account of men and times long since passed away. It professed to be the history of a people which had its orgin at the time of the confusion of tongues and whose prophet's name was Mormon. The style of the book is in imitation of the Holy Bible, but in point of beauty of diction, sublimity of its character, and divinity of its author, it holds no comparison. The only work with which the Mormon Bible can be compared is the Koran. Each is the oracle of a false religion, and the author of each was an impostor.

Well may Mormonism blush at its parentage. The life of its founder presents no [new] feature worthy of imitation, and his character is associated with all that is vicious and immoral. Mormonism itself is but a specious humbug, whose vital principle is polygamy. Such is the man -- such is the religion of which he was the founder.

The Modern Sodom -- True Character of Brigham
Young's Government -- Startling Statements.

The National Intelligencer of Monday contains a communication signed 'Verastus,' which fully corroborates the statement of Judge Drummond. With the latter our readers are already acquainted, and annexed will be found equally startling revelations, which are contained in the communication of 'Verastus.' Of this correspondent the Intelligencer says:
Among those whose attention has been arrested by the Army Order is a respectable citizen, who lately spent twelve months in the Salt Lake Valley, engaged in business connected with the transit of the mails through the Territory to and from the Pacific. While thus residing in the Mormon community, he studied attentively the character and government of Brigham Young, the supreme head, as well as the customs, habits, morals, and laws of the community, if laws they may be called, which consist simply in the will of a despot. This gentleman, corroborating fully all that Judge Drummond has lately stated on the subject, has deemed it his duty to make known to the country the result of his own observations on the condition of things in the Territory. In executing this task, however, he has not touched upon the domestic enormities and depraved social system of the community, but has confined himself to the political aspect of Mormonism -- to an exposition polity, power, evil purposes, operations, and character of Young and his coadjutors or tools. His statements are startling, and we concur entirely in the remark of a Richmond cotemporary that it is high time that the Government of the United States was directing its serious attention to the condition of things in Utah. And if the revelations of our correspondent be true, as we do not doubt they are, it is apparent that that the day is rapidly approaching, if it be not already come, when the Government will find it no easy task to subdue the rebellious legions of Brigham, and quell the power of the modern Mohammed in his strongholds.
Verastus' introduces his subject by congratulating the country upon the proposed movement of troops in the direction of Utah. He then proceeds to furnish evidence of


Now, as evidence of their inveterate hatred to Americans and every thing pertaining to America, (and these sentiments are constantly taught and preached.) I will cite as follows:

'A Gentile shall not board in my family, and if one of [my] houses was rented to a Gentile after the time had expired I would burn it down! That's the doctrine.' -- Jedediah M. Grant.

'If a Gentile were boarding in my family, and I should bow down to pray, and the Gentile or heathen should hesitate, I would say to him, bow down, you devil! This is the doctrine, and I know it; and any man who shall oppose it shall be destroyed.' -- Heber C. Kimball.

Their religious tenets may be inferred from the following:

'I believe in marrying brothers and sisters; I believe in the pre-existence of man; that Adam and Eve are the parents of all men, spiritually and physically; that all the saints of this dispensation will be resurrected by Joseph Smith, jr. If I am ever saved, I expect to be saved by and through the atonement of Joseph Smith!' -- Brigham Young.

'Were my daughter to marry a Gentile. I would save her in this kingdom, namely; cut her throat from ear to ear.' -- Brigham Young.

Their advocacy of internal improvements may be inferred from the following:

Mr. Lee, who piloted the Government troops through on that route (South side of Great Salt Lake) last spring, (1854,) wished to publish a book -- a guide of the route -- but was prevailed on not to it, as the Presidency there (Carson Valley) did not wish the emigration to pass that way.' -- Elder Johnson.

Object of missionaries: 'Most of the foreign missionaries will be called home. -- They will be sent among all the Indian tribes to teach them agriculture, the mechanic arts and military tactics.' -- Brigham Young.

Means of defense: 'We have the self-loading the twenty-four repealing rifle, the Minie rifie, Browning's revolving five-shooting rifle, Colt's rifle and pistol, and a revolving cannon, or field-piece.' -- Elder Ivins.

All of the above named fire-arms, powder, ball, &c, are in process of secret manufacture.

What the Indians are expected to do: 'It (the United States mail) may come this way awhile yet, as they (the Indians) wish to cut off the mail going from here!' -- Elder Hawkins.

'The Sioux, Cheyennes, and Arapahoes have banded together against the Gentiles to the number of 3,000 warriors.' -- Walker, Chief of the Utah Indians.

'The Lamanites the battle (Indians) are the battle axe the Lord in the hands of the Mormons.' -- Mormon Bible.

'There is no more union in the Masonic Order than any other, except the Mormon. Heber C. Kimball.

'The right of private search by 'rogues keys' is a peculiar characteristic order of the Mormons.' Memoranda.

The law and the prophets: 'A kingdom can exist within a Republic.' -- Brigham Young.

'No one was ever known to dissent from the will of Brigham Young.' -- Orson Pratt.

What may be expected: 'If Government officers ever interfere with our women again, I will cut their throats from ear to ear.' -- Brigham Young.

'A division of the United States army shall never winter in this valley again.' -- Brigham Young.

The above quotations are taken from a mass of information collected in 1854-5, during nearly a year's stay in Utah, all of which came under my personal observation, and was noted at the time it was spoken. -- I have been thus particular at the time it was spoken. I have been thus particular in noticing these quotations that the public may know upon what are based the conclusions that follow.


The Mormon priesthood is a consolidated system of police, compounded from the old Aaronic, Levitical, Melchezideck priesthoods and is known by the name of 'The Church of the Latter Day Saints of Jesus Christ.' Brigham Young is the Prophet, Priest, and King of the Saints. His will is law; he is the vicegerent of God, deriving authority directly from Him, which isabsolute whenever he says 'thus saith the Lord.' Brigham stands upon the shoulders of his two councillors; they stand upon the shoulders of the other ten apostles; they stand upon the shoulders of the high priests; they stand upon the shoulders of the bishops; they stand upon the shoulders of the captains of fifties and seventies; they stand upon the shoulders of the elders; they stand the upon shoulders of the lay-members of the church; they stand upon the shoulders of the laboring masses who till the soil, which supports the pile. From his towering height, Brigham issues forth his edicts to the people, county and with the scorpion lash of his serpent tongue he lashes every one beneath him into silence. 'No one was ever known to dissent from his will.' The entire fraternity is bound together by oaths the most solemn to support the church and nothing but the church, and every man, woman, and child is constituted a police officer, always on duty; and required to report to the head whenever any thing of sufficient interest occurs to justify it. country,


From this you will not fail to perceive that the church form is but a closely compacted system of police, having a head from which it derives all power, and a body forming a nucleus around which are gathering the ignorant, the superstitious, the bigot, the outlaw, and the disaffected of all countries in the world, who are taking refuge, as they suppose, under the wings of the angel of the last dispensation. However deluded the great mass of their followers may be, the leaders are [not] deluded, but are knaves from choice, willfully misleading the masses for the purpose of obtaining and wielding power, boldly predicting the overthrow of the Republic, when they will resume the reins of government and proclaim Mormonism to the benighted nations of the world.


Every species of information is studiously kept from the people except their own doctrines, which are so ingenious and fascinating that they bewilder rather than enlighten, til the feeble mind becomes lost in the mazes of metaphysicial theories, and, looking around for some sure anchor of safety, despairing lulls prostrate at the feet of the monster, imploring him, in the language of scripture, 'I believe; help thou my unbelief.'

The endearing appellation of 'brother and sister' is applied to all classes indiscriminately, which, with the plurality wife system and the marriage of blood sisters, breaks up and obliterates every vestige of the family relation.

One-tenth of all property and one-tenth of all products are demanded as 'tithing;' and then not only the man, but his wives and children and his property entire are consecrated to the church. All are at the disposal of Brigham.


The entire male population of the State are enrolled in the militia, who are under weekly (some daily) military drill, every one of whom, from the body of twelve to the man of eighty years, is required to keep on hand one hundred rounds of cartridges, one gun or rifle, one or more pistols, swords, sabres, knives, &c. all he can obtain; and then, in the event of war, the woman and children are to fight with whatever weapon they can command.


Now, when we consider their location, a thousand miles inland on every side, in the mountain fastnesses of the continent; their numbers, which, according to Chief Justice Drummond, are one hundred thousand in the Territory and two hundred thousand in surrounding States and Territories; their appliances of war; their secret agents in every nook and corner of the Republic; their emissaries among every Indian tribe on the continent, teaching them 'the mechanic arts and military tactics,' they amount to something more than we have been accustomed to regard them. They have settlements on Salmon river, Oregon Territory, and on Lewis river, near Puget Sound, in Washington Territory, and in Carson Valley and at San Bernardino, California. They instigated the Indians to revolt in Oregon and Washington Territories in the late war, and were in my judgment, the cause that created the necessity for the proclamation of martial law by Gov. Stevens; and when the Governor forwarded a supply of goods to and for the Nez Perces in payment of debts contracted with them when returning from treating with the Blackfeet or Crows in the winter of 1855-6, on the arrival of the train at Col. Craig's the Indian agency for the Nez Perces, they have been induced to favor Kom-in-kun, the Yakima war chief, refused to receive the goods either in payment of debts or as presents, and ordered all the whites to leave their country. CoI. Craig, the Indian agent, was retained in case of need; the train returned hastily to the Dalles; but other whites among the Nez Perces, instead of coming to the Dalles and claiming the protection of the United States army, went through the country of the war Indians to the Mormon settlement on Salmon river for protection! In Col. Shaw's last battle with the Indians in the Grand Ronde among the camp equipage of the enemy he captured ammunition with Mormon labels on them!


Throughout the States and Territories, at various and convenient localities, the Mormons have what are termed 'Stakes in Zion,' and each stake is governed by a Presidency. It may not be known to many that there is a stake in the city of New York, whose President is editor of a paper called, 'The Mormon;' at Council Bluffs is another stake and another paper; at Independence another stake; at St. Louis, &c. Their agents and spies are in every city in the Union, adapting themselves to surrounding circumstances, luring the ignorant and unsuspecting into their meshes; secretly denouncing individuals whom they suspect capable of informing against them; pursuing their victims with a pertinacity that over comes all obstacles; and their agent in Congress keeps them constantly advised of the policy and aims of the General Government. They are in the frontier post offices either by appointment as postmasters or as clerks, and have the opportunity of supervising the transit and distribution of all mail matter; and it may not be improbable that to this cause may be traced the loss of so many letters going to and coming from the Pacific Territories.


Now, in view of the facts herein set forth and the assumption by Chief Justice Drummond that they are a hundred thousand strong in Utah and two hundred thousand spies and emissaries in States and adjoining Territories, with every facility for obtaining and transmitting information; allied to a savage Indian horde of three hundred thousand more, who are, in their hands, the 'battle-axe of the Lord,' to be wielded against the Gentiles; added to a thousand miles of land travel, prairie and mountain, with natural means at hand to throw every obstacle in the way of an army, by running off their animals, cutting off small parties, poisoning the springs of water, and blockading the canyons and mountain passes; I repeat, in view of all these facts staring us boldly in the face, they form an obstacle to the peaceful settlement of the interior of the country of no mean character, and which should be promptly met by the General Government.

In my judgment the only way to meet the necessity of the case is to appoint a military governor for the Territory, with discretionary power to place the whole Territory under martial law, backed by military force of at least five thousand men, amply equipped with munitions of war and a year's supply of provisions: then station the army at three several points in the Territory, not to fight the people, but to defend them. By proclamation now call on all true citizens of the United States to come out and enroll themselves under the flag of the Republic: warning all hostile thereto to leave the Territory under penalty of capture, trial, and execution by martial law. This, in my judgment, will be the easiest, cheapest, and safest mode of reaching and remedying the evil. The idea that if left to themselves they will break up and disband by internal dissensions is futile and absurd.


They have a solid nucleus of one hundred thousand strong, with two hundred thousand spies and emissaries scatted over the whole country, and a savage ally of three hundred thousand to be [at] their bidding. And what want they more? A State Government! -- No: they already have that which to them is far better, namely, willful perversion of the democratic principle of self-government, declared in the Kansas-Nebraska bill, "to regulate their own institutions in their own way." This leaves them in a far better condition to propagate their treasonable designs than if they were existing under the form of State Government. As there is no power in the Constitution to force them into the Union, (God forbid they should come in!) they always remain a Territory of the United States, recognizing the federal laws merely as a form, while the power de facto remains absolute, and the head of the church becomes the head of the State.

Note 1: William H. Payne's article was reprinted from the New York Home Journal of Oct. 18, 1856. It also appeared in the July 23, 1857 issue of the Millersburg Holmes County Republican and several other contemporary newspapers.

Note 2: Some of the Palmyra Smith family traditions mentioned in the Payne's article were first published in a June 1851 issue of the Rochester Daily American. Payne evidently derived most of his article's information from some early 1850s paraphrase of Orasmus Turner's reporting.


ns. Vol. III.                        Columbus, Ohio, Wednesday, May 20, 1857.                        No. 304.

                        From the Journal of Commerce.

The  Mormons.

The insolent defiance of the laws of the United States, and the authority of Congress -- the assumption of power superior to and distinct from that of the Federal Government -- the destruction of the records of the Supreme Court, and the ill-treatment of the Territorial officers, by the Mormon settlers in Utah, acting under the orders of Brigham Young, as detailed by Judge Drummond, have given fresh importance and prominence to the Mormon question, and caused it to occupy the serious attention of the Government at Washington. The picture drawn by Judge Drummond in his letter resigning his office as Judge of the Supreme Court in Utah, exposes a deplorable condition of affairs in that Territory, and shows that Brigham Young, the Mormon Chief, is the instigator and director of the murder, rapine and violence, which are of daily occurrence, against the persons and property of those who are not Mormons or who refuse to subscribe to the loathsome doctrines which they profess. Bad and intolerable as is this state of things, we are persuaded that it will soon be remedied, and that the Government will employ speedy and efficient means to compel the Mormons to obey the federal authority and acknowledge the supremacy of the law of the United States.

If a man of decision, coolness and ability, acquainted with border life, be delegated to exercise the Executive power, armed with sufficient authority, and supported by a few regiments of the United States troops, he will soon force Brigham Young to admit that the statutes of the United States are superior to the edicts which he promulgates, and demand a prior obedience, and in restoring respect for the law and authority of the Federal Government, will prove to the benighted followers of the Mormon Prophet the folly and wickedness of their present practices, Major Ben McCulloch is such a man, and his decision whether to accept the appointment or not, is anxiously awaited.

The alleged cause of these rebellious acts is the dissatisfaction felt by the Mormons at the apparent reluctance of Congress to admit Utah into the Union as a State. They claim that under the Constitution, which secures the most perfect and comprehensive religious freedom, they cannot be excluded from the Confederacy and kept in a continual state of tutelage and subjection on account of the peculiar character of their religious belief, and that according to the doctrine of popular sovereignty they cannot be excluded from the federal partnership merely because their social institutions do not accord with the sentiments of a majority of the American people. They insist that as their population has attained the numerical strength to entitle them to become a State, and as their form of government is Republican, they have a constitutional right to be admitted without any reference to the existence of polygamy as one of their domestic institutions.

It is well known that many of the most decided and unflinching supporters of the Constitution and popular sovereignty, will oppose the demand of Mormons to be admitted into the Union, on the ground that they are morally incapacitated to receive the privileges they claim, and that if Mormons with their revolting system of polygamy be declared co-equals with the other members of the Confederation, the institution of marriage, one of the most important moral and social institutions which we possess, will receive a fatal blow, and be practically excluded wherever the Mormon tenets are allowed to exist. The Mormons are generally regarded as without the pale of civilization and morality; as composed of the basest and most worthless of all nations, and as practising daily what is most repugnant to Christian ideas of virtue and decency. It is certain that the popular feeling is strongly opposed to their admission to an equality of citizenship with the citizens of other States, and even the repeal of the Territorial law of Utah and the annexation of the Territory to New Mexico, is proposed as the best and most satisfactory way to terminate the conflict between strict Constitutional rights on one hand, and the general horror of Mormonism on the other.

The immediate question, however, is not the admission or rejection of the State of Utah. -- Before that question can arise, the present rebellion in the distant border settlement must be subdued; the violence and disorder which now prevail must be suppressed, Brigham Young's ascendancy broken down, and he and his satellites taught, that within the limits of the United States there is no place, however distant or isolated, where the federal authority can be disobeyed with impunity. That speedy and vigorous measures should be adopted to restore the absolute control and authority of the United States in Utah, and to punish those who shall be proved guilty of crime, is obviously necessary; but we do not share the exaggerated alarm which we see expressed by some of our cotemporaries, as to the magnitude and difficulty of the enterprise, nor do we think that fire and sword are the surest or most advisable means to attain the desired result. The matter we believe occupies the serious attention of the Cabinet, who are in possession of the amplest and most accurate information as to the state of things in Utah. It could not be in wiser or safer hands, and we do not entertain the least doubt that the necessary steps will be taken without needless delay to rebuke and punish the insolence of Young and the brutality of his besotted followers; to vindicate the law of the United States, and to restore the supremacy of the federal authority.

Notes: (forthcoming)


ns. Vol. III.                        Columbus, Ohio, Thursday, May 21, 1857.                        No. 305.

From the St. Louis Evening News of the 19th.

Recapture  of  Children  Stolen  by  Mormons --
Elder  Pratt  in  Custody.

About two months ago, we published an account of the kidnapping of several children by the Mormons at New Orleans. The father was absent at the time, in California, and the mother, who had been deluded by the Saints, lent herself to the infamous scheme by which her own children were to be ruined. The kidnappers started with the children from New Orleans to go through Texas, Arkansas and the Indian Nation to the Salt Lake trail, but were fortunately intercepted by the father, who, having heard of the affair, had returned, and started in pursuit of them. The following letter is from him to his friends in this city and gives some of the particulars of the arrest.

Fort Gibson, Cherokee Nation. }      
May 7th, 1857. }      
Dear Friends: I have just arrived from a sore tramp, in which I succeeded in coming up with Eleanor and the children, and have taken the children from her by force. I have placed Eleanor in charge of the U. S. Marshal, and have succeeded also in arresting Pratt, who is now in the guard-house of the Fort. The U.S. Marshal will start with his prisoners for Van Buren to-morrow, and I will by a different route, in company of Capt. Cahil and lady, leave with the children for the same place. I arrested Pratt and E. J. on charge of larceny, -- in stealing the clothing on the children when kidnapped -- in the value $8 to $10. It is the only way I could reach them in these Territories. When I fail before the U. S. Commissioner at Van Buren, I mean to have Pratt arrested for having fled from justice from St. Louis, Mo., and get a requisition from the Governor of Missouri for him. You are fully posted. See Strong, and inform him forthwith of the best manner of proceeding. * * *
    Thank God for his goodness,
           Yours truly,       H. H. McLean.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XIII.                          Cleveland, Ohio, Saturday, May 23, 1857.                          No. 122.

Letter  from  Utah  Territory. --
More Violence and Bloodshed by the Mormons

We have dates from Salt Lake City to April 1st, with accounts of more violence and even bloodshed by the Mormons. It appears that a man named Parrish, a seceding Mormon, left the walled town of Springville, to come to the States on foot, his wagon and horses having been stolen by Mormons the night previous to the departure. He was accompanied by his two sons, and two men named Potter and Darger. They had not left the place more than a few hundred yards behind when they were attacked by a number of men armed and disguised. Potter was shot dead, five balls having entered his body; Parrish fell wounded, when one of the assailants rushed upon him, and, in his disabled condition, cut his throat from ear to ear, and ripped up his abdomen. One of Parrish's sons ran about eighty yards, when he was struck down, his throat cut, and his abdomen ripped up. The other young Parrish and Darger contrived to escape. The only notice taken of the matter by the Mormon authorities was the summoning of a coroner's jury, who sat upon the case and returned a verdict of "assassination by some persons unknown."

Potter was a brother of one of the men killed in Gunnison's massacre, and was one of the very few who knew the secret history of that sanguinary transaction. Parrish and his sons were also well acquainted with the Mormon secrets, having once been in full Mormon communion.

Another tragedy, not very dissimilar, is also reported by the last mail from Utah. It occurred about seventy miles from Parawan, on the California road, and the victims were a small party of seceding Mormons emigrating to California. Four were shot as they encamped at the foot of some rocky hills. The names of two of these men were Tobia and Peltro. They too were well apprised of the aims and secrets of the Mormons and therefore too dangerous to be allowed to emigrate.

Joseph Young, a son of Brigham, has returned from England, to which he had been accredited as a missionary. He left a young wife behind him when he undertook his mission, but since his return has taken no notice of her. To make up for this deficiency he has "sealed" two new wives, one of them a niece of deceased Jedediah Grant. Brigham's youngest daughter, Alice, by his first and true wife, has been recently "sealed" much against her mother's will as well as her own, to a man named Clawson, who had already three or four wives. Baptisms had been very frequent in Great Salt Lake City. -- At one of these ceremonies four hundred Mormons were baptized and rebaptized, and at another three hundred went through the same "purifying" rites.

Notes: (forthcoming)


The  Ohio  State  Journal.

Vol. XLVII.                     Columbus, Ohio, Wednesday, May 27, 1857.                    No. 9.

Interesting Letter from Judge Drummond --
Real State of Affairs in Utah.

Chicago, Ill., Monday, May 4, '57      
To the Editor of the N.Y. Daily Times.
      Sir: A valued friend of mine has just presented me an extract of a communication from Ferramorg [sic - Feramorz?] Little, of Great Salt Lake City, which made its appearance in some of the New York papers, in which this high functionary of Mormonism, this Elder of the Latter Days, this member of the "quorum" of the "seventies," this spiritual brother-in-law of Gov. Brigham Young, this tool, agent and abettor in the blackest crimes that the malignant heart of man can conceive, has had the church duty to perform in denying the allegations in my communications to Attorney General Black. In the first place he asserts that the books and records were not destroyed. I assert that they were, that Mr. Little well knew it at the time of the black outrage, and that in his capacity of Elder, he sat in judgment on certain members of the Church and cut them off, for the reason that they expressed a degree of dissatisfaction at that high-handed outrage of the High Priesthood of Mormonism.

Again he asserts that at the time that he left Salt Lake there were no persons in the Penitentiary of Utah save three Indians, who were convicted in A. D. 1854. This, I assert, is a gratuitous and unmitigated falsehood, and well known by Mr. Little; and that there were at least four young men in the Utah Penitentiary who were tried and convicted before Elias Smith, the Probate Justice of Great Salt Lake City and County, in March, A. D. 1856, and severally sentenced for fourteen, sixteen and eighteen months; and that, too, without those men having committed any criminal act known to the law books save the Mormon Priesthood, and that they were in the Penitentiary when he left Salt Lake City, and that he knew that fact.

Again: I assert that a man by the name of Lewis was tried and convicted before George Peacock, Probate Judge of Manti County, in December last, of assault and battery, and put in the Penitentiary of Utah for five years' time, and that before he was incarcerated in the prison that he was castrated by a Mormon mob, all of which Mr. Little well knew and no doubt had an active hand in this bloody outrage.

Again, he asserts he never heard anything of the murder of the dumb boy, Whitehouse, by the English Doctor named Baker. I assert that Mr. Little's connection with that band of church-licensed pirates and murderers well-known as Danites or Destroying Angels, is such as to keep him fully and promptly posted in all the nefarious acts of the church, and in this case in particular, that he well knew that Baker was tried and should have been hung for one of the most brutal murders ever committed by the hand of man; that the Jurors did find him guilty of murder in the second degree, and that he, Baker, was sentenced to the Penitentiary in care of Deputy Marshal Anson Call, on Wednesday, and promptly pardoned by Governor Young, without ever seeing the inside of the Penitentiary, before the following Sunday; that Hosea Stout and John Bair were the lawyers who defended Baker, and that Joseph A. Kelting was the counsel for the Government on the trial; that Lewis Bronson, Wm. Stevens, Allen Russel, George Catlin, John Cavier, Chas. Williams, Chas. Price, Jeremiah Hatch, John Mangum, Warren Snow, Wm. Holden, and Orville Cox were the jurors who tried the case.

Again, Mr. Little asserts that the murder of Col. Babbitt, on the Plains, last Fall, is all fancy, &c. Mr. Editor, I wish it was so; that Col. Babbitt was a bad man and a murderer, no man will deny, neither did I expect Mr. Little and his numerous licensed coadjutors in crime to acknowledge that they had murdered Babbitt and Sutherland, while on the way to the "peaceful valleys of the mountains;" but, Sir, it is the base and cruel act, the manner in which it was done, of which I complain. If Babbitt was worthy of death, let him be tried by a constitutional jury of his country, and not by a self-constituted court, known as the Melchisedek Priesthood, or higher law of a Church whose code is stained with the blood of countless scores. Babbitt had been in and out of the Church, as occasion seemed to require, for nearly twenty[-nine] years, and at times, when under the influence of liquor, told many solemn truths on the subject and design of Mormonism, among which were the secret oaths administered to the male members of the Church when taking their endowment degrees, all of which are pregnant with treasonable designs; and for this overt act the poor unfortunate fellow lost his life, in strict obedience to the absolute law of the Church, all of which Mr. Little well knew.

In connection with this communication I send you an affidavit made by Hiram A. Watson, now a resident of the city of Chicago, and a gentleman who enjoys the confidence of all who know him (save the Mormons;) and as Mr. Watson has been a minister of this Church, and was honest enough to leave it after losing several thousand dollars worth of property, I fancy that his statements will be taken for far more real worth than the man who is still in the meshes of the Church, who is still the pliant, willing and obedient tool of the Church, whose duty it is not only to say openly that the charges against the Mormons are untrue, but it is his duty to go into Court and swear that they are false and untrue, which he would assuredly do.

But, Sir, why is it that all the appointees under both Fillmore and Pierce's Administration so nicely agree as to the disloyalty of the Mormons, and their open and secret rebellion to the laws and instructions of the country? Does not the universal language of all these men agree in this state of facts? Certainly, Sir, no man will have the presumption or ignorance to take any other view of the subject. Then you must conclude that these men tell the simple truth as far as they go, or that they have all joined together as enemies to the truth.

Tear up the graves of a Shaver, a Harris, and of Babbitt; call together all the judges, secretaries and Indian agents, who have not been under the baneful influence of Mormonism, and in one universal tongue will they recite the same state of stubborn facts which constitute now a record that will yet agitate this happy country from centre to circumference. The American people, thank heaven, are kind and benevolent to a fault; hence, Sir, those arch-traitors are relying on that benevolence; and while the parent Government deals with this Territory as a rude child, in loose kindness, every effort is being made to bring into that Territory a class of ignorant aliens from foreign countries to build up an independent republic in the midst of the most beautiful republican form of government that civilized men ever beheld, and after ages will yet point to America as a stench in the nostrils of all refined and civilized countries, unless a firm and speedy step is taken to suppress that spirit of organized hostility to our common country; and I for one, Sir, confess that I have but little hope of seeing this question fairly and promptly met by this Administration; but it will be met in the pulpit and on the rostrum, by politicians in after years, as a stepping-stone to political preferment, which should certainly be avoided; but will it?

Respectfully yours,                 W. W. DRUMMOND.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XIII.                          Cleveland, Ohio, Monday, June 1, 1857.                          No. 129.

Card from Mr. Isaac Sheen -- The Murder
of Babbitt, Secretary of Utah, and of P.

Editors Commercial: Your paper of the 27th inst. contained an erroneous statement concerning myself. I am not a brother-in-law of Mr. H. H. McLean, who is reported to have killed Parley P. Pratt, a polygamous Mormon apostle. The mistake originated out of the fact that Mr. A. W. Babbit, late Secretary of Utah, who was murdered, as is believed, by B. Young's Danite band, was my brother-in-law. The information that I communicated to Mr. McComb, (the father of the deluded victim of P. P. Pratt,) was solely intended to enable him to recover the children, and to enter into legal measures against Pratt. The fatal termination of this affair was altogether unexpected and unsought for by me, and it was with pungent grief that I contemplate the fact that P. P. Pratt, who was once an exalted apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ, should thus fall by the judgment of God for having "given heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils."

Notes: (forthcoming)


Daily  Commercial  Register.

Vol. VII.                       Sandusky, Ohio, Wednesday,  June 3, 1857.                       No. 5.

The  News.

It is announced that orders have been issued from the War Department for sending to Utah the second regiment of dragoons, the Fifth and Tenth regiments of infantry, and Capt. Phelps' battery of light artillery, numbering in all some 2000 men under the command of Gen. Harney. This is said to be only the beginning of the movement.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Daily  Commercial  Register.

Vol. VII.                       Sandusky, Ohio, Thursday,  June 4, 1857.                       No. 6.

The  News.

We yesterday received a telegraphic dispatch from St. Louis, which was inadvertently omitted in our issue of last evening, containing important news from the Mormon country. The Leavenworth Herald learns from Mr. Williams, who left Salt Lake on April 15th, that there was great excitement at that place. Brigham Young was carrying things with a high hand, and driving the Gentiles out. Judge Stiles, the U. S. Marshal, and the Surveyor General with his family and a large number of emigrants had been obliged to leave the Territory. This outrageous conduct of the Utah Governor accounts for the movement on the part of the General Government in sending out a large force of troops, to which we yesterday referred.

Notes: (forthcoming)


ns. Vol. IV.                        Columbus, Ohio, Wednesday, June 17, 1857.                        No. 15.


ANOTHER MORMON MASSACRE. -- The mail from Salt Lake arrived here this week, says the Los Angeles Star of the 9th, bringing intelligence of another horrible massacre having been committed in Utah Territory. The circumstances are as follows:

Mr. Wm. Parish, his son, a young man about 17, and a Mr. Potter, started from this city for the purpose of going to California. They had proceeded but a short distance, when their bodies were found dead -- Mr. Perish's throat was cut from ear to ear, and the others had been shot. Their bodies were found at a place called Springville, about fifty miles from Salt Lake City.

Rumor has it that Potter had a difficulty with the Church authorities about removing his property which he had previously "consecrated" to the Church.

The intelligence of this murder caused the greatest excitement at San Bernardino, where part of Mr. Parish's family reside, as well as generally throughout the country.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. ?                             Canton, Ohio, Wednesday, June 24, 1857.                             No. ?

Squatter  Soverignty  coming  home  to  roost.

The Locofoco government has taken great pains to build up the new principle of Squatter Sovereignty, in order to shirk the direct responsibility of making Kansas a slave state -- leaving the dirty work for the Atchisons, Stringfellows and Border Ruffians in general, backed by the United States troops and Judge Lecompte.

Judge Stiles has been mobbed out of Utah by the Mormons, and the records of the United States Court have been destroyed by them. The Mormons claim entire and exclusive jurisdiction in and over the Territory -- claiming that the government of he United States has no right there. And this is the climax of their own doctrine of Squatter Sovereignty. How can Buchanan interfer with Mormon Squatter Sovereignty, without violating a material plank in the Government Platform! Sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander, gentlemen! The Mormons are determined to hold the chalice of your own making to your lips. If you back out of your Squatter Sovereignty doctrine and coerce the Mormons, you show yourselves to be political knaves and charlatans -- and if you don't bear down on the Mormons with a heavy hand, you will exhibit to the world a paltroonery lower and meaner than anything Pierce was guilty of. You will find in the end, that honesty is always the best policy. The first step in a knavish course, was apt to keep you in hot water, and the longer yiu continue in it, the more you will suffer.

==> Accounts from Washington to the 19th inst., say, Col. Cummins will be appointed Governor of Utah -- and Emory D. Potter, ex-Congressman from Ohio, and E. C. Kells, of Indiana, Judges for Utah .

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XIII.                          Cleveland, Ohio, Friday, June 26, 1857.                          No. 151.

(Correspondence of the Baltimore Sun.)
                        Washington, June 23, 1857.

The Utah Appointments Completed -- The Administration
and Mormon Treason -- No Constitutional Power for a
Crusade Against Polygamists any more than Abolitionists...

The administration have completed territorial appointments for Utah. The Governor, Judges, Marshal, &c., will proceed forthwith to the Territory. The body of troops detailed for their support cannot be sent out there before the middle of July, and some say will not reach their destination -- to wit, the government reserve, forty miles south of Salt Lake City -- before the end of August.

King Brigham has gone on an expedition to the north to plant another Mormon colony. It appears probable that the Mormons, who are well acquainted with every part of the interior of the continent, have selected spots for a number of settlements, where communities will be organized. They depend upon foreign immigration for a vast accession of members and of means to their colonies. It is not an extravagant supposition that ten years hence they will have a population of half a million, and a hundred thousand fighting men.

The idea that they can be exterminated or expelled from the country, or that their fanaticism will be repressed by force, is wholly absurd. Treason against the constitution and laws of the United States may be punished, and this is the extent of the power of the federal government over this matter.

There is nothing in the constitution that justifies a crusade against abolitionists or Romanists, or Calvinists, or seventh day prophets. The anti-slavery journals are the fiercest of all in opposition to the Mormons. If they can find constitutional power for one crusade they can for another.

But the administration does not share in the extravagant views which are put forth on this subject, and the instructions to Governor Cummings will be to take care that the laws of the United States be obeyed in the territory, and to exert every constitutional power to secure the due administration of justice.

Washington, June 25. -- Gov. Cummings left this afternoon for St. Louis on his way to Kansas. He will return in ten days and will then receive his commission and instructions by the act establishing the Territory of Utah in 1850. Right is reserved to Congress to abolish the Territory at its pleasure.

It provides that said Territory may be divided or attached to any other State or Territory. The act passed on assurances that polygamy and no one of its institutions should be introduced into the Territory. The vast majority of Mormons are not citizens of the United States.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XIII.                          Cleveland, Ohio, Monday, July 6, 1857.                          No. 158.

(Correspondence of the Baltimore Sun.)
                                   Washington, July 2d.

Dissension among the Utah Mormons -- The Protection of the
United States Laws as an Escape from Brigham's Tyranny...

Advices from Utah by way of California confirm the reports of dissension among the Mormons, and the supposition that a large number of them will gladly exchange Brigham Young's tyranny for the protection of life and property which the authorities and the laws of the United States will afford them. “Apostacy“ from Mormonism will become very common, if not almost universal, after Brigham Young shall be deprived of the prestige and the authority which the federal government has too long afforded him, by suffering him to hold the office of Governor for seven years -- and three years after the expiration of his term. The Mormons might well have been induced to believe that the power of Brigham Young would be as permanent as his audacity, and that the federal government would not presume to interfere with or control him.

The California accounts of Mormon abuses are more revolting than any before received from any quarter, showing as they do, that numbers of Mormons who have been suspected of disaffection towards Brigham Young's tyranny are daily assassinated by his corps of janissaries, whom he calls "destroying angels." If any part of these accounts be verified to the U. States authorities, Governor Young ought to be, and it is presumed will be, apprehended and punished for felony and treason. It is not in the nature of things that such institutions can continue, for they carry within themselves the seeds of their destruction and the disposition and punishment of Brigham Young will no doubt disenthral the Mormons from the debasing system to which their leaders have subjected them.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. 43.                             Canton, Ohio, Wednesday, July 15, 1857.                             No. 14.

Salt  Lake  Mail.

One of the best things yet done by the administration of President Buchanan has just come to light in a western paper. It appears that the Postmaster at Independence, Mo., has received an official notice from the Postmaster General that the contract for carrying the mails from thence to the Salt Lake has been set aside; and he is therefore ordered to withhold the mails until further orders. -- This is done by virtue of a right always reserved by the department, to rescind mail contracts on giving due notice and a month's pay to contractors. In this case the contract was taken by a company of Mormons at Salt Lake city, who have already made several trips under it. -- So general were the complaints of the mails having been violated and letters opened, especially the correspondence of the government officials, that it became quite evident these Mormon contractors were mere tools of Brigham Young. The administration has also taken another step toward insuring the faithful performance of the mail service in Utah; a Postmaster had, it seems, been appointed for Salt Lake City, who was not a Mormon. His commission was forwarded to him, but never reached its destination, and duplicate copies failed likewise. -- In fact, he was not recognized by Nrigham Young. He has now received his comission in person at Washington, together with full instructions as to his course, and will be sent out supported by a protecting military force.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Daily  Commercial  Register.

Vol. VII.                       Sandusky, Ohio, Wednesday,  July 22, 1857.                       No. 46.

From the Plattsmouth (Nebraska) Jeffersonian.

Breaking up of Mormondom -- Mormons Returning in
Disgust -- Their Opinions of Zion.

A train consisting of about one hundred persons, with twenty wagons, passed through this place on Friday last on their return from Utah to the States. They formed part of a company of two hundred persons and forty teams; but some distance back the remainder took the road for Leavenworth. They left Salt Lake about the 20th of April, and were on the road a little over two months They bore the appearance of persons who had seen much trouble and privation -- being reduced in body and dejected in mind. A more pitiable set of persons we never beheld. They rejoice! that they had at last reached a land where they could once more live at ease.

The account of their exparience in Utah was touching in the extreme. In the narration of what they endured they seemed to approach the subject with reluctance and feelings of horror in calling to mind their sufferings, but in the course of their remarks would invariably become animated, and break out in expressions of indignation at the cruelty and oppression which they had endured. They declared the whole system to be but a grand scheme of robbery and sensuality on the part of those in authority. It is not by direct compulsion, they stated, that the property of their followers is taken, but by means of religious enthusiasm. This is inspired by the promise of great spiritual rewards, and by setting before them the example of Scripture characters; that as Job received an increase above all his former possessions, so should they, by their self-sacrificing, reap an increased reward, both of spiritual and temporal possessions. After all their property was exhausted, then the policy of their rulers would change, and their conduct would be such as to say, "Get away if you can." If any one should become dissatisfied and desire to leave, they were publicly denounced, and the whole church forbidden to purchase any property they might wish to dispose of. From that day they would be subjected to the insults of the entire community, if not absolute danger of their lives. One person stated that in order to get away he had to sell his farm, clandestinely at that, for sixty dollars. They reported that one man went out with $3,000, and was returning in the train with his team only, and had not enough to eat. Another, who had a farm worth there seven thousand dollars, sold it for thirty-five dollars. A man by the name of George Brooks, (if we recollect aright,) who had considerable grain and goods stored in his house, on incurring the displeasure of the elders, had the sides of his house literally stove in and his property all carried off, he only escaping with his life.

When the train first approached we inquired whether they were from California or Utah. An old man who was standing near replied, "We are from beautiful Zion."

"What is your opinion of Zion?" we Inquired.

His reply was, "I went once in search of Zion, but will never go out again till I know where it is to be found. It is the worst Zion that I ever set my foot into."

We enquired concerning the hand-cart trains, and the true reason for employing them. They said that it was the greatest piece of cruelty that was ever perpetuated; that it was at times horrible to behold the condition of those who arrived in that way; that frequently their hands and feet were frozen, and their limbs, from the effects of fatigue and exposure, swollen to more than twice their natural size; that sometimes, when they were able no longer to pull the carts, the women and children were loaded with the baggage, and proceeded thus until they fell down from sheer exhaustion; and that, after arriving in this condition, they would die off like "rotten sheep," as they expressed it. They stated that one reason for forming hand trains was, that those who came in that way, if becoming dissatisfied, would have no ready means of returning, and that those in authority curse the emigrant trains which pass through on their way to the Pacific, as they afford means for dissatisfied persons to escape.

In speaking with one quite intelligent young man, he stated that he had been there nearly four years, and that the reason he did not leave sooner was because he hoped it would be getting better. He remarked that if he should meet a train going through he would do all that he could to persuade them not to go; but if they persisted he could only leave them to find out the reality by sad experience. The company report that four or five hundred men were going to leave this spring, and are probably on the road by this time.

Note: Mormon "blood atonement" was generally not extended to the Gentiles, but was instead reserved for those LDS apostates who left the church, denying their former testimonies of the "restored gospel." It stands to reason that an emigrant train passing through Utah in 1857, and providing sanctuary for escaping apostates, would have been more susceptible to Mormon harrassment, than would have been the case for a wagon train that did not take in any deserting former Saints.


Vol. XIII.                           Defiance, Ohio, Saturday, August 8, 1857.                           No. 50.

Brigham Young and his Wives.


Let us pay Brother Brigham a visit. It is four o'clock in the afternoon, and Brigham is most probably at his office, and will receive us affably. We pass the Tithing Office; notice that it is a large adobe building, with several offices attached where the workmen obtain their flour and provisions. We observe a group of women, with generally common and pale faces, who are waiting for their "men's pay," which they have to almost beg from the surly fellows who attend them. These small houses we pass next are the mansions in which D. W. Wells' wives reside. They are almost mud hovels. Mr. Wells is a "prophet, seer, and revelator," as well as second counselor to Brigham. He has some six ladies in his sanctified harem; two of them are sisters, and report says they often manage to get up anything but the heavenly scenes befitting such a paradise begun. We next come to Brigham's orchard. He is a great lover of fruit, and has a great family who are great lovers of fruit too. They, however are carefully excluded from the orchard; peach trees and apple trees would soon be desolate else. Here is the "Lion House." This is a long house, with the first stiry of stone. In front, on top of this first story, is a very well sculptured lion, with his head dropped onto his stretched paw. -- This is intended to represent Brigham Young -- "quite but watchful." In this house some seventeen or eighteen of the prophet's wives reside....

We open the gate, walk up the steps, when the door opens, and face to face, on his own door sill, we confront the famous prophet Brigham Young.

In person he is above the medium height and a little inclined to corpulency. He is dressed in black cloth, and although the air is very warm, he is well wrapped up in an overcoat. His habits of life make him very sensitive to the slightest changes in the atmosphere. He has suffered a good deal in his younger days, and this with the cares of his family -- for his children are very refractory -- begin to weigh heavily upon him. His constant struggles and difficulties with the U. S. officers not only try his patience, but also wear his body. His consuming anxiety about his object of ambition -- the establishment of an independent kingdom, -- and his efforts to maintain the people in constant and implicit submission, are sufficient to leave their mark on any man's physique. he is now fifty six years old, and, although young looking in features, still evinces his age in person. His face is indicative of penetration and fierceness. Some ladies think him very handsome; but his lower lip, if nothing else, eminently betrays the sensual voluptuary. To strangers he is very courteous, bit easily offended by the slightest allusion to the people of their polygamy... [a fanciful conversation follows]...

There sits another person... She is a fine-looking woman, although now past age. She illustrates another class of Brigham's wives. That is Mrs. Cobb. She saw, heard, believed, and loved Brigham Young; embraced Mormonism, and ran away from her husband, a respectable gentleman in Massachusetts, carrying off her daughter... She arrived at Council Bluffs and married Brigham Young. Her husband, hald-crazed, endeavored to obtain his child but was baffled and out manoeovered, and they got safely to Salt Lake. She is now a "mother in Israel," and her daughter, if not married to Brigham himself, will probably become second or third wife to one of his boys.... (under construction)

Note: Compare the above, extended narrative, from an 1857 issue of Harper's Weekly, with the shorter, more abrupt descriptions of Young's domestic situation, as provided in John Hyde's 1857 book.


Daily  Commercial  Register.

Vol. VII.                       Sandusky, Ohio, Saturday,  August 15, 1857.                       No. 67.

Revolution  Among  the  Mormons.

Important intelligence reaches us from Utah. The infatuated inhabitants of that Territory are engaged in intestinal broils that promise to eventually become a matter of very serious import. Brigham Young -- as has been before reported -- has gone North with an expedition, fully equipped, with three months' provisions and a train of eighty wagons. Various rumors as to its object are afloat, but the most conclusive is, that he has gone in search of a location to defend his people from the expected attack of the U. S. troops. He exhorts the Saints in the event of an assault to kill each his man and thus secure each his own salvation. But all this pretended regard for the laity on the part of their ruler does not quiet their rebellious and dissatisfied spirit. A large portion of them are disgusted with the enormities of Mormonism, and would gladly return to their peaceful and civilized homes in the States if opportunity offered. But those who are suspected of apostacy are strictly guarded by the more faithful, and the least overt act of rebellion or note of dissension is visited with the most terrible penalties, the murder and robbery of the unfortunate apostates. Yet under all these unfavorable circumstances great numbers are almost daily forsaking the Saints and seeking an asylum either in California or the States. A train of one hundred wagons belonging to apostates, had left the country just previous to the leaving of the last mail. It is stated by a gentleman fresh from Utah, and one on whose judgment reliance can be placed, that one-half the Mormon population would leave, and will do so, if the General Government will but send a sufficient force to protect them. New dimensions are continually arising. That which causes the most ill-feeling is Brigham sealing young girls to old men. This the girls, as a matter of course, and their relatives, protest against. Several heads of families have been put out of the way, as they call it, on suspicion of being apostates, by which means they prevent the family from leaving. Several who heretofore have been in the confidence of the high priests are known to have been murdered.

May we not reasonably recognize in these open dissensions and uneasiness of the deluded followers of Brigham Young, the germ of that outbursting revolution that will sweep with the besom of destruction from our fair land the enormity of Mormonism?

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XIII.                          Cleveland, Ohio, Saturday, August 22, 1857.                          No. 199.


WASHINGTON, August 21. The interior department received intelligence from a reliable gentleman and fugitive Mormon, that Brigham Young is preparing to resist General Harney: that he has [relapsed] into the grossest infidelity and that he continues to hold up the government of the U. S. to the supreme contempt of the Mormons.

RETURNED MORMONS. The Council Bluffs Non-pariel says that a company of returned Mormons are now encamped near that place, and that they intend to make the Bluffs their future home. They have tried the glorious "land of promise" and found promises more plenty than deeds, or at least than good deeds.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Daily  Commercial  Register.

Vol. VII.                       Sandusky, Ohio, Saturday,  August 27, 1857.                       No. 67.

The  Utah  Expedition.
                      Washington, Aug. 27.

Gen. Scott has been busy all day with Gen. Jessup, in making out a programme for the movement of troops for Utah. They have finally decided that the expedition to Utah shall proceed. It is not decided yet whether Gen. Harney or Col. Johnson will command the expedition. Gov. Walker is very anxious to retain Harney in Kansas. A messenger will be dispatched to Kansas to-morrow to settle the matter.

Dr. Forney, of Pa., was to-day appointed Superintendent of Indian Affairs for Utah. This completes all the appointments for that territory. They will all proceed west immediately and join the army at Fort Laramie. Gov. Cummings is now at Fort Leavenworth, waiting for the other appointees to arrive.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XIII.                          Cleveland, Ohio, Saturday, September 19, 1857.                          No. 224.




Extreme Measures Threatened.




It is a little more thon twenty-seven years since I commenced reading the Book Mormon and defending the cause we are engaged in. My mind was open to conviction, and I knew that the Christian world had not the religion that Jesus and his Apostles taught. I knew that there was not a Bible Christian on the earth within my knowledge. A few years previous to that time Joseph had obtained the plates and began translating the Book of Mormon; and from the time he found those plates in the hill Cumorah, there has been just that tirade of abuse, lying, slandering, defaming the name and character of the Prophet and his associates, that there is at this day. It is no hotter a time now than it was then; there is no more persecution now than there was then.

God has commenced to set up his kingdom on the earth, and all hell and its devils are moving against it. Hell is yawning and sending forth its devils and their imps. What for? To destroy the kingdom of God from the earth. But they cannot do it.

The God of heaven showed Nebuchadnezzar that this kingdom would never be destroyed; and that is my testimony. This is the kingdom of heaven -- the kingdom of God which Daniel saw -- the kingdom that was revealed to King Nebuchadnezzar and interpreted to him by the Prophet Daniel. This is the kingdom that was revealed to King Nebuchadnezzar and interpreted to him by the Prophet Daniel. This is the kingdom that was to be set up in the last days. It is like a stone taken from the mountain without hands, with all its roughness, with all its disfigured appearance -- uncomely -- even a stumbling-block and a stone of offence to the nations of the earth. This is the kingdom that is set up; and the history of the kingdoms of this world all understand, or can read and understand it.

Some may cry out, "Your saying that this is the kingdom of God does that make it so." No, not by any means. "Your testimony," Mr. Young, "is, that this is the kingdom of God on the earth -- that which was shown to Daniel the Prophet centuries ago." Yes, that is my testimony. "Does this make it so?" No it does not; but let me tell you that it is true; consequently, I bear my testimony of its truth, though my testimony does not alter that truth in the least, one way or the other; neither does any other man's. That is my testimony, and has been all the time.

Why I testify of these things is because they are revealed to me, and not to another for me. They were not revealed to Joseph Smith for me. He had the keys to get visions and revelations, dreams and manifestations, and the Holy Ghost for the people. Those keys were committed to him; and through that administration, blessed be the name of God, I have received the spirit of Christ Jesus, which is the spirit of prophecy. Our testimony does not make this true, and the testimony of our enemies that it is not the kingdom of God does not make that true or false. The fact stands upon its own basis, and will continue so to stand, without any of the efforts of the children of men.

I have told you the cause of all the bustle and stir against us. The blind are leading the blind; and if their hearts were honest, if they would throw off the mask of prejudice and erroneous education, they could receive the truth as well as you and I. Once in a while one says "good bye" to the traditions of the fathers. A few will cast off those prejudices that surround the people, and say, "We will read, pray, think, and meditate, and we will ask God for ourselves." That is the reason why you and I are here to-day. We asked God for a testimony, and he witnesses to us from the heavens that this is the kingdom which Daniel saw, and we have embraced it, and it is dearer than everything else upon the face of this earth.

Do we expect that the devils will howl? Yes. When has this Church had the peace that we have had since we have been in the mountains? Never. Where is there peace now upon the face of the earth like the peace we enjoy here? Nowhere. Brother Smoot said that he had been in the lower regions. He could say that with propriety; for, in fact, we are all in the lower regions. Where do you think the devils live?

Do you suppose that there is any such thing as a devil? Yes, a great many believe that there is. Where does he live? The answer comes very readily. He lives in hell, of course. Then, if there are devils here, we must also be in hell. Do you not think that the devil is in pain? I should think he was, by the groanings that are uttered from the east. You see that with propriety brother Smoot could say that he has been to the lower regions; but when he arrives here, although the altitude is much greater, he still is in the same world. We are all here, and we are surrounded by the devils.

Men rage and boil with wrath and indignation, and they do not know the cause of it. If they think, "What injury have the 'Mormons' done to me?" the response from their own minds will be, "Not any." What can the men truthfully say, who have civilly passed through here to the west to make their fortunes? That here is a place of peace and contentment; and, though a thousand miles from civilization and from all the luxuries and many of the comforts of life, yet here is a people satisfied, contented, and happy. Did they injure you? "No." Did they treat you kindly? "Yes." Ask the people in the east what is the matter? "We cannot tell you, -- only somebody has said something." What have they said? "We do not know; we only heard a rumour, -- that is all."

The people abroad are just as foolish, unwise, and short-sighted as they can possibly be represented by the best learned men in the world. What are they doing? What they have done all the time. Have they been trying to destroy "Mormonism?" Yes. Did they destroy it when they took the life of Joseph? No. "Mormonism" is here, the priesthood is here, the keys of the kingdom are here on the earth; and when Joseph went, they did not go. And if the wicked should succeed in taking my life, the keys of the kingdom will remain with the Church. But my faith is that they will not succeed in taking my life just yet. They have not as good a man to deal with as they had when they had Joseph Smith. I do not profess to be very good. I will try to take care of number one, and if it is wicked for me to try to preserve myself, I shall persist in it; for I am intending to take care of myself.

When they killed Joseph, they were talking about killing a great many others. Would you believe that the apostates say that I was the instigator of the death of Joseph and Hyrum? And William Smith has asserted that I was the cause of the death of his brother Samuel, when brother Woodruff, who is here to-day, knows that we were waiting at the depot in Boston to take passage east at the very time when Joseph and Hyrum were killed. Brother Taylor was nearly killed at the time, and Doctor Richards had his whiskers nearly singed off by the blaze from the guns. In a few weeks after, Samuel Smith died, and I am blamed as the cause of his death. We did not hear of the death of Joseph until some three or four weeks after he was basely martyred.

What is now the news circulated throughout the United States? That Captain Gunnison was killed by Brigham young, and that Babbitt was killed on the Plains by Brigham Young and his Danite band. What more? That Brigham Young has killed all the men who have died between the Missouri river and California. I do not say that President Buchanan has any such idea, or the officers of the troops who are reported to be on their way here; but such are the newspaper stories. Such reports are in the bellows, and editors and politicians are blowing them out.

According to their version, I am guilty of the death of every man, woman, and child that has died between the Missouri river and the California gold mines; and they are coming here to chastise me. The idea makes me laugh; and when do you think they will get a chance? Catching is always before hanging. They understand, you know, that I had gone north and intended to leave this place with such as would follow me; and they are coming to declare a jubilee. It is their desire to say to the people, "You are free; you are not under the bondage of Brigham Young; you need wear his yoke no longer; now let us get drunk, fight, play at cards, and race horses; and every one of you women turn to be whores and become associated with the civilization of Christendom." That is the freedom they are endeavouring to declare here.

I will make this proposition to Uncle Sam. I will furnish carriages, horses, the best of drivers, and the best food I have, to transport to the States every man, woman, and child that wishes to leave this place, if he will send on at his own expense all those who want to come to Utah; and we will gain a thousand to their one, as all who understand the matter very well know. It would have been much better to have loaded the waggons reported to be on the way here, with men, women, and children, than with provisions to sustain soldiers; for they will never get here without we help them; neither do I think that it is the design of President Buchanan that they should come here.

I am not going to interpret dreams; for I don't profess to be such a Prophet as were Joseph Smith and Daniel; but I am a Yankee guesser; and I guess that James Buchanan has ordered this expedition to appease the wrath of the angry hounds who are howling around him. He did not design to start men on the 15th of July to cross these plains to this point on foot. Russell & Co. will probably make from eight to ten hundred thousand dollars by freighting the baggage of the expedition. What would induce the Government to expend that amount of money for this Territory? Three years ago they appropriated $45,000 for the purpose of making treaties with the Utah Indians. Has even that diminutively small sum ever been sent here? It is in the coffers of the Government to this day, unless they have stolen it out, or improperly paid it out for some other purpose.

Have they ever paid their debts due to Utah? No. And now they have capped their meanness by taking the mail out of the hands of Hiram Kimball, simply because they knew that he was a member of this Church. If he had only have apostatized in season and written lies about us, it is not probable that his mail contract would have been taken from him without the least shadow of right, as has now been done. He was to have $23,000 for carrying the mail from Independence to this city once a month which was the lowest bid; but because he is a "Mormon," the contract must be disannulled, and that, too, after he had put by far the most faithful and efficient service on the route that there ever has been, as is most well known at Washington. If I thought that my prayer might be answered, I would pray that not another United States mail may come to this city; for until Mr. Kimball began his service it has been a constant source of annoyance, disappointment, and to us loss. We can carry our own mails, raise our own dust, and sustain ourselves.

But woe, woe to that man who comes here to unlawfully interfere with my affairs. Woe, woe to those men who come here to unlawfully meddle with me and this people. I swore in Nauvoo, when my enemies were looking me in the face, that I would send them to hell across lots, if they meddled with me; and I ask no more odds of all hell to-day. If they kill me, it is all right; but they will not until the time comes; and I think that I shall die a natural death; at least I expect to.

Would it not make any man or community angry to endure and reflect upon the abuse our enemies have heaped upon us, and are still striving to pour out upon God's people? Brother Bernhisel says that McGraw's mail contract was out in August last; but they demanded at his hands and would pay him to carry it two or three months longer. The Post Office Department knew, or should have known, that it had forwarded the acceptance of Mr. Kimball's bid for the new contract in that mail which McGraw was not carrying; and then it took advantage of the failure of that mail and trumped up a false allegation of the unsettled state of Utah, and on those grounds disannulled the contract with Mr. Kimball. Our mail rights and other rights and privileges are most unjustly trampled under foot; but they can spend millions to raise a hubbub and make out that something wrong is being done in Utah.

Let me be the President of the United States a little while, and I would say to the Senators, Representatives, and other officers of Government, Gentlemen, you must act the part of men and statesmen, or I will reprove you. What are they angry at me for? Because I will reprove men for their iniquity, and because I have such influence here, -- the very thing they are all after. They think that they are going to obtain it with money; but they cannot do it.

There is no influence, truth, or righteousness in the world only what flows from God our Father in the heavens. We have that power, that influence; we also have such love and submission that we submit ourselves to our Father and God, as a child does to a kind parent.

May God bless you, brethren and sisters. Amen.

St. Louis Republican 16th.
Latest from the Utah Expedition. --
Kansas and the Plains.

We have accounts from Kansas of late date . The State Convention was in session at Lecompton. John Calhoun was elected President on the first ballot; the vote being, for Calhoun 27; Judge Elmore 12; L. J. Easton 6; Mr. Hughes, late Chief Clerk of the Kansas Legislature, was elected Secretary; Mr. Crewer Sergeant-at-arms; and the correspondent of the New York Time, whose name is not given, was elected Reporter of proceedings.

From Leavenworth we have dates to the 10th, where, it is said, news is as scarce as money in St. Louis -- an extreme case. Politics were quiet there -- murders none, though one had been reported, and there was a chance of hanging one or two men for it

Leavenworth is said to be a growing city, and bids fair to be of considerable importance. -- Rents are stated to be higher than on Fourth street, St. Louis.

Our correspondent writes; "The officers constituting the Utah Territorial Government have not yet started, though at one time they were on the point of doing so, they were only stopped by an order from the War Department. Five hundred officers and soldiers yesterday set out for New Mexico. Col. Johnson, of Texas, is to take command of the Utah expedition: instead of Gen. Harney, which, by the bye, seems to be strange treatment of the General. But Gov. Walker, we are satisfied, thinks his presence important in Kansas, and he has therefore signified his desire for his retention here. Gov. Cumming is getting impltient to visit the dominion of Gov. B. Young, and would like to be under way. The Secretary of the Territory, John Hartneit, has thrown asside his merry humor while in St. Louis, but he is in excellent spirits. Both he and the Governor have many friends horo, and are much esteemed. Many reports come in here in relation to the threats of the Mormons, but they are all, no doubt, much exaggerated. The hardest thing that he has said is contained In the Salt Lake News of a late date:
"And as to the officers appointed by Government for Territories, though such appointments are but arbitrary and unconstitutional relics of colonial usuage, still should any come to Utah and demean themselves like true gentlemen and confine their official acts to their legitimate channels, they will find their offices to partake more of the nature of mere sinecures than in any place they have ever seen, heard or read of. And in addition to the most urbane treatment in our midst, if they need assistance to help them in, and will only guarantee that they will carry out the above specified line of proper COnduct, all the necessary assistance will be promptly extended to them. But poor, miserable curses are not wanted here, and all such characters will find the mountain retreats of the Saints too hot for their comfort, for we have already endured their insults, abuse and corruptions as long as human beings can bear. "

Even these declarations will hardly intimidate the Territorial officers from making a journey to the "home of the Saints." As soon as the Colonel commanding arrives, the expedition will move forward, but even then forced marches will have to be made in order to reach Salt Lake valley before the winter sets in.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XIII.                          Cleveland, Ohio, Friday, September 25, 1857.                          No. 229.

From  Fort  Laramie.

We have advices from Fort Laramie to the 22d of August. Capt. Van Vleit, of the Q. M. Department, who has been sent forward to Utah, in advance of the troops, arrived in Laramie in ten days from Fort Kearney. It was expected that the Tenth Infantry would arrive at that post by the 5th of the present month, and the remainder of the command soon after. Our apprehensions in regard to the expedition are, we are sorry to hear, likely to be realized. The troops will be so late that it is feared by old sojourners at Fort Laramie, that the entire command cannot get to Utah this season.

Col. Sumner has been out, our correspondent says, and we already know, forty days on twenty days' provisions, in search of the Cheyenne...

It is reported to us that a great many people from Salt Lake have been met, and they all say that the Mormons are going to give us jessie. This is, however, very questionable. One thing is pretty certain -- that the road is going to be very unsafe for small parties, unless the Government takes the matter in hand, and prepares itself to thrash everybody.

Three trains loaded with provisions have passed Fort Laramie for Utah, and on the 22d another train arrived, bound for the same place.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Daily  Commercial  Register.

Vol. VII.                       Sandusky, Ohio, Friday,  October 2, 1857.                       No. 10.

Enormities  of  Mormonism.

As each additional seceder escapes from the clutches of their former Mormon brethren, are the enormities of these modern Ishmaelites not only confirmed, but heightened in revoltingness of character. A young Welchman, who emigrated to Salt Lake with his family two years ago from Maesteg, South Wales, recently made his escape from the bondage of the Saints, and in a private letter dated Council Bluffs, June 29, gives a horrid picture of the condition of affairs in Utah. He says it is next to impossible to escape from the ruffians who do the bidding of the prophet, and that hubdreds who make the attempt are overtaken and sumarrily despatched. The party to which he belonged were pursued over one hundred miles and fired upon repeatedly by the exasperated saints. To be a faithful Mormon, he says, a man must give himself, his family, and all his possessions over to Brigham Young, and then he will have to give the tenth of all his income and keep from two to ten wives in addition. This he must do without flinching; and if he does not, he had better quit the country. But the latter resort is rendered almost wholly impracticable from the fact that rather than have one of their number escape from their midst and report their atrocious doings, they will shoot him down like a dog. Brigham Young has got men for this purpose -- four hundred in number, called "Destroying Angels." The young Welchman above referred to says he has seen dozens shot down in the street; and three days before he left he saw three persons killed merely because they intended to escape.

Salt Lake City is encompassed by walls 15 feet high, surrounded by a deep and wide moat. The city is entered by four gates, which are watched in the night time. The gates are so narrow that only one vehicle can pass through at once. The "Destroying Angels" go out on the plains in the spring, in order to intercept those who may escape from the city. They sleep by day and travel by night.

And such an institution is tolerated in a land professing to be enlightened! For shame on such an outrage.

Notes: (forthcoming)


ns. Vol. IV.                        Columbus, Ohio, Thursday, October 8, 1857.                        No. 111.

(From the Washington Union, Oct. 1st.)

News from Utah -- Mormon Impudence.

A letter dated Fort Kearney, September 5, received in this city, states that a party of returning Californians, who passed through Salt Lake on the 25th of July, report that the evening before they left that city the Mormons arrested Mr. Wilson, whom the late Surveyor General Burr left in charge of the office, and, with a rope around his neck and a pistol at his breast, compelled him to answer several questions which they propounded about Bell, Mogo, and others. Mogo was connected with the Surveyor General's office. The Mormons made Wilson promise to bring Mogo to them during the next day before they released him. Mogo obtained information of these proceedings, and immediately quitted the city, leaving his wife behind, so precipitate was his retreat. They went in pursuit of Landon and the other clerk, but Landon escaped by jumping out of a second story window. He went that night somewhere South, and the report is that he was overtaken and killed. As these Californians made but a brief stay, they were unable to ascertain what became of Wilson.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Daily  Commercial  Register.

Vol. VII.                       Sandusky, Ohio, Tuesday,  October 20, 1857.                       No. 198.

Mormon  Outrages  on  United  States  Officials.
                      Washington, Oct. 19.

A letter has been received in this city from W. P. Landon, one of the clerks whom the late Surveyor General Burr left in charge of the office when he, for his own safety, left the Territory of Utah last spring. He was, on the 18th Sept., in Placerville, California. In giving an account of his escape from Salt Lake City, he says that while engaged in conversation with a party of emigrants, he was assaulted by a gang of Mormons led by a fellow named Dick Pettit, and a ruffian associate, who, without cause, severely beat him with stones and clubs. He was scarcely able to reach home in consequence of his wounds. The same afternoon they attacked the Deputy Surveyor Mogo with stones. Landon was driven from his home at night, leaving his wife and child at Salt Lake City. After adriotly eluding his armed pursuers, he reached Placerville in the most distressing condition. -- On the road, he says, he met the Indian Peter, who used to frequent the Surveyor General's office. Peter informed him that Brigham Young had sent him out to get horses and carbines -- The Indian spared his life because he had on several occasions given him red paint. Landon had not long parted from him before he (the Indian) shot a man with four balls. The man escaped, though much injured. Another clerk in the Surveyor General's office, Mr. Wilson, was also attacked by the Mormons. They roughly served him, tearing him away from his family, commanded him to go along with them and make no fuss, or they would d____d soon show him what they were going to do with him. Mr. Landon's letter gives the particulars of these circumstances. It concludes by saying that all the Mormons have left Placerville and Carson Valley for the purpose of defending Zion.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XIII.                        Cleveland, Ohio, Monday, November 9, 1857.                        No. 267.


Horrible  Massacre  of  Emigrants --
Over One Hundred Persons Killed

J. Ward Christian writes to the Los Angeles Star as follows:

San Bernardino, Sunday, }      
October 4, 1857.}      
I take this opportunity of informing you of the murder of an entire train of emigrants on their way from Missouri and Arkansas to this State, via Great Salt Lake City, which took place, according to the best information I can possibly acquire, (which is, primarily, through Indians,) at the Mountain Meadows, which are at or near the rim of Great Basin, and some distance south of the most southern Mormon settlements, between the 10th and 12th ult. It is absolutely one of the most horrible massacres I have ever had the painful necessity of relating.

The company consisted of about one hundred and thirty or one hundred and thirty-five men, women and children, and including some forty or forty-five men capable of bearing arms. They were in possession of quite an amount of stock consisting of horses, mules and oxen. The encampment was attacked about daylight in the morning, so say the Indians, by the combined forces of all the various tribes immediately in that section of the country. It appears that a majority of them were slain at the first onset made by the Indians.

The remaining force formed themselves into the best position their circumstances would allow; but before they could make the necessary arrangements for protecting themselves from the arrows, there were but few left who were able to bear arms.

After having corralled their wagons, and dug a ditch for their protection, they continued to fire upon the Indians for one or two days; but the Indians had so secreted themselves that, according to their own statement, there was not one of them killed, and but few wounded. -- They (the emigrants) then sent out a flag of truce, borne by a little girl, and gave themselves up to the mercy of the savages, who immediately rushed in and slaughtered all of them, with the exception of fifteen infant children, that have since been purchased with much difficulty by the Mormon interpreters.

I presume it would be unnecessary for all practical purposes, to relate the causes which gave rise to the above described catastrophe, from the simple fact that it will be attributed to the Mormon people, let the circumstances of the case be what they may.

But it seems, from a statement which I received from Elders William Mathew and William Hyde, who were in Great Salt Lake city at the time this train was there, recruiting their "fit out," and were on the road to this place at the time when they were murdered, but several days' journey in the rear -- somewhere about the Beaver Mountains, which is between Parawan and Fillmore cities -- that the causes were something like these: The train camped at Corn Creek, near Fillmore City, where there is an Indian village, the inhabitants of which have raised a crop of wheat and a few melons, &c. And in trading with the Indians they gave them cash for wheat, and they, not knowing the value of coin, were severely cheated. They wanted a blanket for a sack of wheat, but they gave them fifty cents, and told them that amount would buy a blanket.

They also had an ox with them which had died, and they put strychnine in him, for the purpose of poisoning the Indians; also put poison of some description in the water, which is standing in holes. This occasioned several deaths among them within a few days after the departure of the train. And upon this, it seems, the Indians gathered themselves together, and had chosen the place of attack, and arranged everything before the train arrived at the place where they were murdered.

It was ascertained by some of the interpreters, from a few of the Indians who were left at Corn Creek, that most of the Indians in the country had left; but they could not learn for what purpose, and before any steps could be taken to ascertain for certain what was the cause, the story was told -- they were all killed.
Yours truly,           J. WARD CHRISTIAN.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. 43.                             Canton, Ohio, Nov. 25, 1857.                             No. 33.

The Prospect of a Mormon War.

From present appearances the danger of a war with the Mormons is imminent. Despatches have been received by the government, confirming the destruction of a supply train [belonging] to the United States Expedition to Utah.

The Mormons were making preparations to oppose the troops. They have burnt off the grass for a distance of two hundred miles [around] Salt Lake City, for the purpose of cutting off feed for the government [------s]. Brigham Young has declared that Col. Johnson and his troops shall not enter the Territory, and has openly defied the U. S. authority. The Mormons in California were selling out their property at a sacrifice and emugrating to Utah. They have eight tons of gun-powder, and over a ton of revolvers, which had been purchased from time to time to be taken along with them. Great fears are now entertained there, from the insufficiency of the present force under Col. Johnson, owing to the Administration's devoting [sic, diverting?] a portion of the troops to Kansas to enforce border ruffianism, the Mormons will, by overpowering numbers, defeat the expedition; and, in such a case, it will amount to a massacre; for, being influenced by religious fanaticism, they will give no quarter. -- Leader.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. 43.                             Canton, Ohio, Dec. 2, 1857.                             No. 34.

Latest from California.

                                                New Orleans, Nov. 28.
... It is supposed that the accounts of the Indian depredations in Carson Valley were exaggerated.

Further news from the plains confirms the belief of complicity of the Mormons with the late massacres.

The papers assert that an efficient army could readily be raised in California to proceed against the Mormons...

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. V.                             Coshocton, Ohio, Dec. 23, 1857.                             No. 11.

The Mormons and their War.

A letter from Mrs. Huddleson, of the overland company to California, gives an account of the frequent attacks they suffered from the bands of Indians and Mormons, who were ranged about, pillaging and murdering unprotected trains. A Mr. Holloway, from Illinois, had his wife and child killed before his eyes, and was robbed of $1,600, escaping only with his life, severely wounded. They found a woman belonging to another train, dead by the wayside, with her scalp taken off.

A Mormon woman in Salt Lake wrote to her husband, Sept. 4th, at San Francisco:

"All the men are preparing for war, both old and young. Some companies have gone out to meet the enemy: more are ready to go when called for. The carrying companies are all coming in; what they cannot bring with them they destroy. They have burned hundreds of tons of hay at the stations. Brother Brigham says that if the brethren will stand by him he will never let the gentiles come into the valleys. He says, before they shall come here he will burn every house, fence and haystack and flee to the mountains. We will make a Moscow of the cities and towns in these valleys, and a Potter's field of every canyon that our enemies come into. Brother Kimball says that all the women must have a dirk knife, so I wish you to bring me one. You must bring plenty of powder and lead. Brother Brigham says that if every saint will live their religion, we will never be driven from these valleys. We shall stay here until the time comes to go to Jackson county. We shall no more be called the traitors of Utah, but the free people of Deseret."

John Hyde, Jr., the seceding Mormon apostle [sic - elder?], writes in the N. Y. Herald, that the Mormons are sternly infatuated, are well armed and disciplined and supplied with the munitions of war, and will prove much more formidable than the Government seems to expect. His plan of the campaign is, to repeal the Utah organic act, proclaim martial law over the Territory, call for volunteers in California and Oregon, offer a reward for the apprehension of Young and his chief confederates, and allow those Mormons who prefer to leave the country rather than submit to the laws to do so. -- He considers the present small force approaching Utah entirely at the mercy of the Mormons, and believes they will be cut off or be made prisoners of war, and that this success will embolden the Mormons to persevere in their rebellion.

A gentleman just arrived at Washington from Leavenworth, brings intelligence that the Mormons had raised forces and blockaded all the avenues to Salt Lake City by the route taken by our forces, and that of Fremont in 1843, in many cases rendering the canyons impassable by means of rocks and other impediments. Young is the agent of Russell & Waddell, the contractors whose trains were burned, and denies his imputed agency in this transaction. He declares that it is not the design of the Mormons to shed blood unless provoked to do so by similar action on the part of the Government. It is believed that they will endeavor to possess of the horses, mules and stores of the expedition, in order to [effect?] a removal early in the spring. From the exposed position now occupied by the advance, this will be a comparatively easy task, unless the army should fall back upon Fort Laramie.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XIV.                           Defiance, Ohio, Saturday, February 6, 1858.                           No. 24.


As this disgusting compound of sensuality, despotism and ferociousness is continually thrusting itself upon public attention, it may interest some of our readers to recall the circumstances in which it originated. The calamity has come upon us as one of the results of that excessive freedom in the exercise of which we throw [open] our empire to all manner of immigrants from the old world; for this anomalous population is chiefly recruited from Europe.

Rev. Solomon Spaulding, a graduate of Dartmouth College, was distinguished for a lively imagination and a love of history. He lived in a part of Ohio abounding with mounds and ruins of old forts, and took much interest in the study of these antiquities. To beguile his hours of retirement he conceived the idea of giving a historical sketch of the race about which there was so much mystery. It was of course a fanciful undertaking, -- giving wide scope for the exercise of imagination, and tempting him to indulge in an antique style while describing ancient things.

The Old Testament containing the most ancient books in the world, he found it convenient to imitate in style. He therefore launched out at will into the region of free historical romance. This was 1812. His neighbors hearing of the progress of his curious work, would come to his house and hear portions of it read. It claimed to have been written by one of the lost nation, to have been recovered from the earth, and was christened with the title of 'Manuscript Found.' This self-amusing gentleman, pretended to be decyphering the mysteries of the disinterred manuscript, and regularly reported progress to his neighbors.

From the classics and from ancient history he introduced many uncouth and unaccustomed names which awakened curiosity.

Mr. S. removed to Pittsburg, and found a friend in the person of an editor to whom he showed his manuscript. The editor was pleased, borrowed it, kept it, and offered to print it, if Mr. S. would make out a suitable title-page. He promised also to make it a source of profit. Mr. S. declined any such use of it.

Sydney Rigdon, who has since figured so largely among the Mormons, was then employed in the editor's printing office; he inspected the manuscript, and had an opportunity to copy it. It was returned to the author who died in 1816. But the influence he had unwittingly originated did not die with him.

There is no doubt, but that Rigdon took a copy of the whole or parts of the manuscript. He appeared in Palmyra, N. Y., in 1829, working at his trade. About this time there began to be talk of certain mysterious 'plates' being found in that region. They had been discovered, it was said, by Joseph Smith, Jr., in the bank of the Erie Canal, near Palmyra. Here Smith and Rigdon conspired to start the fraud. Smith was a man of low cunning, vulgar and sensual in his habits, a fitting accomplice for Rigdon, both being ready to execute any falsehood. Joe was to be set up as a leader, and to assume the title of Prophet.

It was given out that Joe was engaged in translating the plates. This was in 1829. -- Some followers were obtained, principally the ignorant and vicious, and the dishonest who had no character to lose. They called themselves the Church of the Latter Day Saints, and organized at Manchester, under Joe Smith, who issued an edition of 1,200 [sic] copies of the 'Book of Mormon,' at Palmyra. Some three or four seemingly respectable men of that region joined them, which attracted more attention.

Smith and his followers selected Kirtland, Ohio, as their 'City of Refuge,' by inspiration, as the blasphemer said -- the Lording intending and directing that the temple should be built there.

Two Hundred composed the first settlement. -- They called their book the 'Golden Bible.' Smith founded a bond bank, which of course failed, and he found it necessary to move farther west. Thither has been the disastrous progress of those miserable impostors, whose subsequent history is known to the world.

It would seem as if there was no form of folly or impiety which some human beings will not embrace. Polygamy, blasphemy, rebellion, murder are the natural fruits of this wretched conspiracy, which is troubling the whole land. -- N. Y. Journal of Commerce.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. ?                               Cincinnati, Ohio, April ?, 1858.                               No. ?

An Object of Mormon Vengeance.

Eds. Com. -- It will be remembered by many of your readers that Parley P. Pratt (one of the twelve apostles of the Salt Lake Mormon Church,) was killed by Mr. McLain [sic] after he had taken the wife of McLain unto himself. The children of Mr. and Mrs. McLain were secretly taken away from the guardianship of their grandparents, (the father and mother of Mrs. McLain,) for the purpose of taking them to Utah. To prevent these children from being carried off to Utah, I communicated a knowledge of the facts in my possession to their grandfather. I neither expected or advocated the killing of Pratt, but I have obtained indisputable evidence that the Danites of Brigham Young's church have decreed that I shall share in the fate of P. P. Pratt.

The public, and more especially the constituted authorities of this city, therefore, understand where they may find the guilty party, in case they succeed in their malicious and murderous designs. I can, however, look back with delight on the part that I performed for the deliverence of these children from Salt Lake degradation, altho' I know that it may cost my life, unless the publication of these facts prevents it. -- If I am sacrificed for this act, I shall die a martyr's death, for I never sought the life of Parley P. Pratt, and I detest the wicked practices of Salt Lake Mormonism, inasmuch as I am a believer in those principles which were formerly called Mormonism, and which the Salt Lake leaders have abandoned.

Note: The exact title and date of the above communication from RLDS Elder Isaac Sheen to the Cincinnati Commercial remains undetermined. The text is taken from a reprint, published in the Apr. 10, 1858 issue of the Illinois Quincy Daily Whig and Republican.


Daily  Commercial  Register.

Vol. VII.                       Sandusky, Ohio, Wednesday,  May 5, 1858.                       No. ?


THE LEGITIMATE MORMON SUCCESSOR. -- The widow of Joe Smith, the Mormon, still resides at Nauvoo, but she cares nothing for the Saints, and has married a tavern-keeper, who thinks all prophets humbugs. Young Joe, who should by right have been head of the Mormons, is said to be a stout gawky of 22, who hates Brigham Young and curses the Salt-Lakers. Nauvoo was once a place of 20,000 inhabitants, but is now a place of ruins.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. ?                       Cincinnati, Ohio, Thursday,  June 17, 1858.                       No. ?

The  Mormon  Hegira.

There can be no spectacle so well calculated to excite feelings of the deepest pity as that of a whole people leaving their homes, the places where they have resided for years, the houses, the gardens and the fire-sides, endeared to them by a thousand fond recollections, and wandering off into the wilderness in search of places to begin anew. Whatever may be the motive for such an emigration, the act itself is one that cannot be contemplated without emotion. Men do not readily leave their possessions, the comforts which years of labor have gathered around them, the thousand sources of innocent pleasure which they have constructed and cultivated, and with wives and children seek new homes in a desert, without some powerful and controlling motive that relates to the very foundation of their moral being.

The exodus of a whole people in now being exhibited in Utah. The Mormons are on the move in search of new lands whereon to live in peace -- of places where they may hope to worship God in the way that they deem to be right. -- What are the motives for the movement, we can know but in part. That they are,in the minds of the parties most interested, entirely adequate, we may judge frgm the effect. We may say that it is fanaticism. It is easy to call things by hard names, but their application does nothing to solve the problem.

Fanaticism alone does not drive men, women and children from their pleasant homes to find shelter in bleak mountains. We may say that they misapprehend the purpose of the government toward them. Who knows? Who knows that the government has any fixed purpose whatever? Who knows that it is not as treacherous, as cruel, as much bent upon violence as it appears to be?" A single civil officer conquered Utah, and yet there is a large army marching upon the Territory. That army -- it has been said publicly -- is not a mere posse, to aid to preserve the peace in an integral portion of the United States. It is a band of religious missionaries, having a doctrinal calling: to convert a people from a false religious faith -- a people outlawed and denaturalized in order to be fitted for its extremest ministrations -- a sacrament of blood. It has been said, and is said now, and that not merely in prints in the interest of the Administration, that the continuance of the Mormons within the territory of the United States is incompatible with our moral purity.

Within a few days the New York Tribune,with the owlishness that suits so well to its peculiar kind of unwholesome stupidity, has seriously discussed the question, What shall be done with the Mormons? -- assuming At is a conceded point, that they were either to be converted, cut off, or driven out. The idea has been that they were not merely rebellious subjects of our government, but heaven-defying and hell-deserving reprobates, with nothing but a doubtful forbearance between them and utter extermination. -- There has been no party, scarcely a press, in the States, to utter a protest against any manner ofpersecution that might be meted out in their case. The pulpit, professing to speak in the name of a God of mercy and of love, has cried out upon them. Knowing all this -- and they do know it -- is it any wonder that they are afraid? Ignorant, with the recollection of past suffering strong upon them, cut off from regular means of communication, and their ears filled with vague rumors, is it remarkable that there should be a panic?On the contrary, is there not -- knowing all that we do -- something yet to fear? Let us remember how much less they know, and how much more they have reason to apprehend, and we shall wonder little at their terrors. 'All that a man hath will he give for his life;' and that the people of Utah think themselves to be fleeing for that which is as dear to them as their lives, there are the strongest reasons to believe. They kmow that they have been slandered -- charged with crimes of which they are not guilty -- held up to the abhorrence of the world as monsters of general and individual wickedness; and feeling their want of the opportunity to vindicate, and their want of the power to defend, they take the only course that is left to them, and go into exile.

The picture of a thriving settlement abandoned to desolation, of itself, is sorrowful enough; but this but a little. Houses left tenantless, gardens neglected, here and there a domestic animal without an owner, fields unplanted or unreapt, buildings exhibiting the symptoms of that decay which follows so soon upon the heels of desertion -- all these are inducements to melancholy reflection. They are emblems; but who can paint the sadder realities which they signify -- the stern sorrow of men, the convulsive agony of women, the clamorous grief of children, turning their backs upon the sacredest thing on earth, home, and forever: going forth outcasts, with -- so far as they who profess to hold the authority are able to make it so -- the curse of God upon their heads; and with scarce, in the whole world, a spoken voice of sympathy for their troubles, or pity for their sufferings. Surely great sin is great sorrow; and if these poor people are the dreadful criminals that James Buchanan and Horace Greeley pronounce them to be -- so naked and forlorn in the sight of God, and so obnoxious to his anger and his judgment -- there should be here and there one who, conscious of imperfection in himself, can commiserate the burden of sin and shame and misery that rests upon them, and be inclined to pray for their forgiveness as he hopes to be forgiven. Let God be just, and punish if he will; but let the hand of man be light upon his erring brother. We know not what we do when we assume to it in the seat of the All-wise, and pronounce the decrees of the justiciary of heaven. The thunderbolt is safest in the hand of Him who called it into being; and to record and execute- a perfect judgment is only the part of a perfect people. We are in no condition to do it.

Note: The above article was reprinted in the 1858 Deseret News, Vol. 8:120.


Cleveland  Morning  Leader.

Vol. XXII.                     Cleveland, Ohio, Monday, June 21, 1858.                           No. 148.

Mormonism -- The Golden Bible --
What the Mormons have Accomplished
and are Leaving in Utah.

The grain of Mormon mustard seed was planted by its Prophet, Joseph Smith, in 1829. In that year he employed Oliver Cowdery as his amanuensis to write out the Book of Mormon, as the Prophet read the records from the Golden Plates alleged to have been discovered underground in Western New York. Martin Harris, of Palmyra, a farmer of means, became security to Mr. Grandin, then publisher of the Wayne Sentinal, to print and bind 5,000 copies of the Bible, for $3,000. The publication was completed in 1830. The manuscripts were written by Cowdery from translations verbally given by Smith, who alone was able to read the hieroglyphics of the sacred Plates, by means of a wonderful stone and magic spectacles, said to have been found in tbe earth with the records. When translating Smith occupied a dark room, and by special revelation neither Cowdery nor any other person except the Prophet, was permitted to see the Golden Plates, on penalty of instant death. The Plates were said by Smith to resemble plates of gold, and the hieroglyphics, of great antiquity, were "written by the hand of Mormon upon Plates taken from the Plates of Nephi.

The Book of Mormon is a dull story of the lost Tribes, done up in poor Scripture style. There is but little connection in the Books and Chapters, and a wondeifully long bow is occasionally drawn in narrating the adventures of individuals and tribes. When Mormonism began to flourish in the Lake region of Ohio, the Golden Bible was seldom preached or much quoted from in public congregations, the Mormon Elders often being content with a slight reference to it contents, and the remark that, "If the Christian Bible is true, the Book of Mormon is also." The Book possessed but little interest as a romance or a historical work, and it was usually thrown by after a chapter or two had been perused, at least by outsiders.

Nor does the Book of Mormon appear to have become a text book to any considerable extent, even in the teachings in the Salt Lake City Tabernacle. The discourses of Brigham Young, the High Priests and Elders, as reported in the Deseret News, often refer to and quote from the Bible, but never from the Book of Mormon. It is so pointless as really to have been ignored by the Latter Day Saints of the Prophet Smith for more than a quarter of a century.

That Elder Sidney Rigdon, a Campbellite preacher of considerable celebrity in this section thirty years ago, was connected with the bringing out of the Book of Mormon, there is scarce a doubt. In his discourses before the Golden Bible appeared he frequently predicted "a new light, a new revelation," that was soon to appear. He was the forerunner of Smith, and the pretended translations of the Prophet were doubtless transcripts from a romance written by a Rev. Mr. Spaulding, and who was deceased, and whose manuscripts fell into the hands of Rigdon and were by him alteied into the myth of the Book of Mormon. Rigdon was early converted by Smith, and was among the first preacher of the newly "revealed gospel according to Mormon." Rigdon often referred to the "revelation" with "I told you it would be so" sort of an air, and after the murder of Smith, at Nauvoo, attempted to become his successor. Failing in this be established himself over a branch of seceders in Western Pennsylvania, and either run off, run out, apostatized, or died, years ago. His Mormon fame was eclipsed by Brigham Young, and his boastful mission proved a dead failure.

[------ ------ --- -------- ------] Joseph Smith, from the day the small band of Mormons left Kirtland, in Lake county, for their supposed "New Jerusalem" in Missouri. Driven out of that State by fire and sword, they "planted their stakes" and built a city at Nauvoo. The fires of persecution, were again lighted, their Prophet was murdered, and in a rigorous season of the year they were forced from Illinois into the great and inhospitable wilderness of the Rocky Mountains. The following article from the Tribune shows how they have there flourished, and what they now are leaving for the sake of Mormonism. History scarcely affords a parallel.

(view original article from NYC paper)

Note: The writer of the above article neglects to cite a source for his remark: "Elder Sidney Rigdon, a Campbellite preacher... frequently predicted 'a new light, a new revelation,' that was soon to appear." Possibly the writer was giving his own personal memories from thirty years prior to his composing this account.


Vol. XIV.                         Cleveland, Ohio, Wednesday, July 7, 1858.                         No. 158.

The  First  Mormon  Settlement --
Its  Temple -- Decay.

A correspondent of an Eastern paper, from Kirtland, O., gives the following. His letter dats from a small township situated in Lake County, about twenty miles east of Cleveland. The town is somewhat celebrated for being the first settlement to any extent of Joe Smith and his followers in the United States. the population about the year 1834-5 was nearly five thousand; now it has not far from fifteen hundred, very few of whom claim allegiance to believe in the doctrines of the "Latter Day Saints," as promulgated by Brigham Young. He says:

Here the Mormons laid out streets, highways, city lots, built setam-mills, large "blocks" for stores, shops, &v., and made all the preparations necessary for building up a "City of Zion." Here, too, they erected a temple, on which is inscribed, "House of the Lord, built by the Church of the Latter Day Saints, A. D. 1834," and which still stands, not as one on a sure foundation, but as one upon the quicksands of superstition, bigotry and fanaticism, which the winds of religious liberty, good order and moral sociality are fast blowing to decay.

The original internal arrangements of this temple was rather interesting to the visitor. The building is two stories high, of twenty-six feet each, having a large attic; each story had four pulpits, or priestly desks, at either end, one rising above and in the rear of the other, and indicating by certain letters in front the official character of the priests. In the center, the seats for the multitude were arranged much like those in our churches at the present day, except that they were movable, so that the congregation might face either east or west, (the pulpits being at the east and west ends.)

Overhanging the audience were four curtains on rollers, so situated that when unrolled the house would be divided into four equal compartments, each having a speaker and each speaker having a similar screen or drop curtain to exclude his appearance from three-fourths of the house and congregation.

The attic was divided into five compartments for schools, designed to teach Hebrew language. A celebrated Hebrew scholar named Seixas, a gentleman whom the Rev. Doctor stewart often referred for Hebrew authority, had at times a very flourishing school among the Saints.

In this place Brigham Young lived, at one time a Methodist preacher, and was converted (or professed to be) to the faith of the Saints and became one of their Priests.

Dr. Boyington, the celebrated geologist, who has been employed by the United States Government, was one of their number, distinguished among the people of Zion as a teacher and preacher to the chosen ones.

The association in a short time became unpopular, trials and persecutions from the "Gentile"world led some to abandon their faith, but the larger portion left with their leader, Joe Smith, for Missouri, about twenty years since; and nearly the one evidence of their former prosperity, or I might say habitation, here, is the "Temple," now fast crumbling to decay, on the broken and shattered walls of which the names of thousands upon thousands of visitors are written, soon to pass into obscurity and to be numbered with the things that were. The mills, shops and stores and many of the dwellings are decayed, torn down or unoccupied. There yet stands, however, a large unoccupied three story house, known as the "Boston House," built by two maiden ladies converted to the Mormon faith. Whether they have gone to find husbands, or have been called to that unknown country which all must occupy, your correspondent is not informed.

Note: The above article was reprinted in the 1858 Deseret News, Vol. 8:120.


The  Ohio  State  Journal.

Vol. XLVIII.                 Columbus, Ohio, Wednesday, November 10, 1858.                 No. 33.

Origin of Polygamy in the Mormon Church.

A correspondent of the Louisville Journal, who professes to be well informed in regard to the practices of Mormonism, thus corrects a statement made in the Journal that Brigham Young was the author of the institution of polygamy now existing in the Mormon Church:

The institution of polygamy, or the "spiritual wife" system which is the same thing in fact, was first introduced into the Mormon Church in Kirtland, Ohio, whither the Mormons emigrated from Western New York, about the year 1833.

Finding himself surrounded by many hundreds of devoted followers, the great mass of whom were ignorant and capable of being completely controlled by him, Joe Smith attempted to impress upon their minds the idea that a personage, resembling Jesus Christ in character and relation to God, would spring from him, and become their prophet, after his (Smith's) death, or departure to the realms of glory. To accomplish this object, he selected his victim from his flock -- a virgin, pure and beautiful; her he made his spiritual wife, inducing her to believe that she, like the Virgin Mary, was selected to become the mother of a great reformer and leader of God's. Of course Smith was to stand in the same relation to this virgin as the Holy Ghost did to Mary. Well -- time flew on apace, and the highly favored virgin was brought to accouchement, when lo! the promised Messiah turned out to be a girl! But the cunning seducer was prepared to face this difficulty; he very deliberately, and with the dignity becoming a prophet, informed the innocent and deluded victim of his lust, that she had deceived herself, was wanting in faith, and therefore was not, as she supposed, the chosen vessel of the Lord, from whom a prophet should spring. At that time the spiritual wife system was confined, if I recollect aright, to a chosen few of the leaders of the church. Indeed, it was not acknowledged publicly by the Mormons until some time after they settled in their present locality.

The parctices of this vile fanatical sect well nigh ruined the morals of the village of Kirtland during their stay. In the first court that convened in the county, after the departure of the Mormons for Nauvoo [sic - Missouri?], there were some fourteen or fifteen cases of bastardy in that township alone.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Cleveland  Morning  Leader.

Vol. ?                           Cleveland, Ohio, Saturday, March 5, 1859.                                 No. ?

Relief of Grandison Newell -- Singular Case.

The General Assembly has passed a bill for the relief of Grandison Newell. Though of a private character, it is not without some public interest When Jo. Smith located the Promised Land in Kirtland, and with Sidney Rigdon built the Temple and undertook to regulate the currency of the Saints and the world by an issue of Kirtland Bank shinplasters, Mr. Newell lacking faith in the legitimacy of such proceedings commenced prosecutions against them; and obtained judgments against each in favor of the State. Smith and Rigdon went to Missouri before collection could be made. Mr. Newell expended several hundred dollars in the prosecution for which he has never been reimbursed, and the object of the bill is to assign to him the judgments in favor of the State in order that he may levy on and sell the rickety old Mormon Temple on Kirtland hill. This is the substance the claim as stated by the correspondent of the Sandusky Register.

Note: See also Dale W Adams' "Grandison Newell’s Obsession" in Vol. XXX:1 (Spring, 2004) Journal of Mormon History, especially pages 182-182. Adams says: "The vote on the [1859 Ohio Assembly] bill that allowed Newell to take Smith's assets indicated widespread dislike for Mormons even fifteen years after Joseph Smith's assassination. All house members in attendance (eighty-one) voted for the bill, as did twenty-three of twenty-eight senators. In other words, only five of 109 voting representatives had reservations about giving Smith estate assets in Kirtland to Newell."


The  Daily  Press.

Vol. ?                           Cincinnati, Ohio, Tuesday, March 15, 1859.                                 No. ?

The Ohio Legislature has passed an act to revive the persecution of the Saints. A Mr. Grandison Newell petitioned the honorable body of law makers for the renewal and transfer of a judgment, held against Sidney Rigdon and Joseph Smith, Jr., obtained through due process of law while the said Rigdon and Smith had a shinplaster banking concern at Kirtland, once the head-quarters ot Mormonism. The judgment is for $1,000 on each of the men mentioned, and if Mr. Newell pursues the Latter-day Saints as he did many years ago while at Kirtland, he will drive them out of Salt Lake City and the country. Who knows but that the Legislature had in view the fact of Newell's powers of pitching into Mormons generally, and hoped thus to rid the world of this troublesome sect. State Journal.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XV.                         Cleveland, Ohio, Saturday, May 14, 1859.                         No. 112.

The  Last  Days  of  Oliver  Cowdery.

Well known in these parts was Oliver Cowdery, Joe Smith's chief scribe and transcriber of the Book of Mormon. He flourished in Kirtland, Lake Co., as one of the Chief Elders, and was a conspicuous, though a deluded man. He died several years since, but left on record the following historical scrap, which has just come to light through the last Deseret News, from which we copy:

At a special conference at Council Bluffs, Iowa, held on the 21st of October, in the year 1848, brother Oliver Cowdery, one of the three important witnesses to the truth of the Book of Mormon, and who had been absent from the Church, through disaffection, for a number of years, and had been engaged in the practice of law, was present and made the remarks here annexed. Br. Orson Hyde presided at the said conference. Br. Reuben Miller, now Bishop of Mill Creek Ward was also present at the time and noted what he said and has furnished us what he believes to be a verbatim report of his remarks, which we take pleasure in laying before our readers: -- "Friends and Brethren, --
My name is Cowdery, Oliver Cowdery. In the early history of this Church I stood identified with her, and one in her councils. True it is that the gifts and callings of God are not without repentance; not because I was better than the rest of mankind was I called; but, to fulfill the purposes of God, he called me to a high and holy calling.

I wrote, with my own pen, the entire Book of Mormon (save a few pages) as it fell from the lips of the Prophet Joseph Smith, as he translated it by the gift and power of God, by the means of the Urim and Thummim, or, as it is called by that book, "Holy interpreters." I beheld with my eyes, and handled with my hands the gold plates from which it was transcribed. I also saw with my eyes and handled with my hands the "holy interpreters." That book is true. Sidney Rigdon did not write it; Mr. Spaulding did not write it; I wrote it myself as it fell from the lips of the Prophet. It contains the everlasting gospel, and came forth to the children of men in fulfillment of the revelations of John, where he says he saw an angel come with the Everlasting Gospel to preach to every nation, kindred, tongue and people. It contains principles of salvation; and if you, my hearers, will walk by its light and obey its precepts, you will be saved with an everlasting salvation in the kingdom of God on high. Brother Hyde has just said that it is very important that we keep and walk in the true channel, in order to avoid the sand bars. This is true. The channel is here. The Holy Priesthood is here.

"I was present with Joseph when an holy angel from God came down from heaven and conferred on us, or restored, the lesser or Aaronic Priesthood, and said to us, at the same time, that it should remain upon the earth while the earth stands.

"I was also present with Joseph when the higher or Melchisedek Priesthood was conferred by the holy angel from on high. This Priesthood was then conferred on each other, by the will and commandment of God. This Priesthood, as was then declared, is also to remain upon the earth until the last remnant of time. This holy Priesthood, or authority, we then conferred upon many, and is just as good and valid as though God had done it in person.

"I laid my hands upon that man -- yes, I laid my right hand upon his head -- (pointing to Bro. Hyde) and I conferred upon him this Priesthood, and he holds that Priesthood now. He was also called through me, by the prayer of faith, an Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ."

Before his death Cowdery was fully restored to the Church, and died full in the faith of the Latter Day Saints.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XV.                         Cleveland, Ohio, Tuesday, May 17, 1859.                         No. 114.


The Former "Stake of Zion."


Something About Joe Smith, Brigham Young,
Sidney Rigdon, the Steamboat in the
Air, Plates of Gold, the Temple,
"the Unknown Tongue," &c.

At this time almost everything pertaining to the Mormons and Mormonism is of interest. On a recent visit to Kirtland we took some notes which we have written out, and trust our readers are too well bred to go to sleep over them. The memorable journey was performed with a horse that will not permit grass to grow under his feet, and before sunrise (for we took an early start) we were half way there. Pausing on a romantic spot for a moment to gaze in raptures upon the novel and brilliant spectacle (we allude to sunrise) and to allow our fellow-voyager to re-light his Meerschaum, we again put our fiery steed in motion and arrived in the pleasant village of Willoughby at "a good old fashioned" breakfast hour. Willoughby, as our readers know, is where the (now) Cleveland Medical University used to be. A great many Saw-bones, as Mr. Samuel Weller aptly termed doctors, graduated in Willoughby and are now pedling physic and sawing bones with honor and profit in various parts of the country. A ride of three miles over an uneven road brings us to Kirtland, where the Mormons used to live, where the Mormon Temple now stands, and where the first attempt at a general Mormon organization was made in the world.


Kirtland is in Lake County and about twenty-three miles from Cleveland. The village is located on a hill on the southern side of a branch of the Chagrin River, which winds its way through the beautiful valley below. The village now contains some two hundred and fifty inhabitants. When the headquarters of the Mormons it contained over three thousand inhabitants. The Mormons intended to make a great city here. This was to be the gathering "stake," and the "City of Zion" was to be in Missouri. The streets are all laid out regularly, in the center of which stands a spacious square, but the houses and people are absent. The once magnificent Temple has a mouldy appearance and the window-glass has has mostly yielded to the brick-bat pressure of the promising Gentile youths of Kirtland. The little one story frame house where Joseph Smith, the Prophet, eat [sic], drank, slept, and professed to have ever so many revelations from On High, is now in the hands of the Gentiles, and the door of the house occupied by Brigham Young (then one of the Twelve Apostles) is adorned with a small sign, bearing the words, "DRESS MAKING." The house which Sydney Rigdon, then high in authority in the Mormon Church, built and lived in is now occupied by Brother Frank, a zealous member of the "Democratic Church." Joe Smith’s Bank, which flooded the Reserve with shinplaster money, has been moved from its former site to the upper part of the village and is now occupied as a dwelling house by a Gentile family. The "streets," once alive with the busy tramp of Mormons, are grass covered and deserted now. Our fellow-voyager said it reminded him of Goldsmith’s Deserted Village, and re-lit his Meerschaum, sacrilegiously igniting a match in the very pulpit once occupied by the Prophet Joseph!


In the year 1831 a few persons in Kirtland imbibed a love for Mormonism through reading the revelations to Smith and listening to the Brothers Pratt and one or two other strolling Mormon preachers. Plates of gold, on which these revelations were printed, were dug out of a mountain in Manchester, near Palmyra, New York, by Smith -- so it was said and by very many believed. Considerable enthusiasm having been created at Kirtland, Smith moved there. He said the Lord ordered him to come there and establish a city. He was soon followed by Brigham Young, the Brothers Pratt, Heber C. Kimball, and others, who at once became leaders in the Church. Sydney Rigdon, then a preacher of the Campebilite persuasion in Mentor, embraced the Mormon faith and moved to Kirtland. The gathering increased rapidly and at one time numbered some three thousand persons. The Temple was built in 1833-34. It is 60 by 80 feet. It is of rough stone, which is covered with thick cement and marked in imitation of regular courses of masonry. The money was raised by contribution. A tablet surmounts the large window in front, bearing the words, "House of the Lord. Built by the Church of the Latter Day Saints. A. D. 1834." The first and second stories were divided into two large rooms for public worship. The attic contains about a dozen small rooms, some of which were occupied as a Hebrew school during the reign of Mormonism. The ground room is fitted up with pews and has a row of three pulpits at either end. This room was gorgeously furnished and when lighted up at night, presented a brilliant appearance, as we can readily believe. The pulpits were occupied by the officers of the priesthood. The row at the entrance was filled by the Aaronic priesthood, whose duty it was to attend to the temporal affairs of the Church. Those who attended to the Spiritual affairs of the Church were called the Melchisedek priesthood and occupied the row of pulpits at the opposite end of the room. The pulpits bore gilt initials, signifying the rank of those who occupied them. The gilt long since disappeared before the ravages of the Gentile youths of Kirtland, but the carved letters remain. The middle pulpit at the back end of the house was occupied by the Prophet Joseph and his council. Curtains were so arranged on wires that this room could be instantly divided into four apartments when it was thought necessary to do so. The curtains have vanished with the gilt above alluded to. "This is not the Temple it once was!" said a melancholy old Mormon, who still lingers, with a few others, around the once grand spot, even as a handful of Indians will sometimes linger sadly around the ruined hunting grounds of their tribes, refusing to seek a new home, with the bulk of their kind, in the wild lands of the Sunset.

The pulpits of the Temple used to be richly cushioned and trimmed with red velvet and silk tassels, but the velvet and tassels have gone with the gilt and curtains! The walls, once spotlessly white, are profusely profaned with the autographs of visitors. Counts, congressmen and circus-riders -- poets, privates, pedlars and pudding-heads -- lads, lassies, ladies and one lord have scrawled their names and the day and year "I visited this Temple," on the once immaculate walls.

The Mormons had a short and merry life at Kirtland. For two years after building of the Temple they thrived wonderfully. Infatuated men of wealth joined them and poured their possessions confidingly into the lap of the Prophet Joseph. The leaders lived fat and fast. Joseph, if report does not foully wrong him, was a very gay Prophet, and an extremely jolly Prophet, and a considerably dissipated Prophet. "He wore broadcloth every day" -- so we were told by an old citizen -- "and wanted his tods regular." He ruled the roost at Kirtland. He knew how to do it. He was a crafty and cunning as a fox, but bold and daring when occasion required. If an objection was raised to any plan of his, he would apparently yield for the time being, but he would soon have a "revelation" endorsing the wisdom of his plan, ordering its immediate consummation, and that settled the matter. His "revelations" came through a hole in the roof of his house -- so it was said and without doubt sincerely believed by many -- and this hole was looked upon with awe and reverence by the society! He used to shut himself up in this little house all alone, night after night, and receive "revelations." But the prosperous winds suddenly changed. His Bank bubble burst -- the Society became involved in all kinds of litigation with the Gentiles -- and in the latter part of 1836 [sic - 1837?] there was a general stampede to Nauvoo, Illinois, and Jackson County, Missouri. In Nauvoo Smith built another splendid Temple and thrived again for awhile. His bloody and brutal end is familiar to our readers. He was murdered in Jail with his brother Hiram, by a mob, on the 27th of June 1844. Brigham Young succeeded to his place in the Church.

Sydney Rigdon, mentioned before, claimed the place of Joseph. The voice of the Church said otherwise, and he went to Pittsburgh and started an organization in contradistinction to the Young wing. A small branch of the Rigdon wing was established at Kirtland, and Leonard Rich, who had been President of the Seventies during Smith’s reign, was made President of the "Stake." Rigdon had a "revelation" ordering the Saints to swap wives all round. Rich and the few Mormons at Kirtland refused to fall in with this arrangement, and Mormonism again died there. Rigdon flourished awhile but the unpropitious breezes floored him at last, and he retired to the interior of New York, where, a helpless old man, he now lives. He was a man of education and very shrewd. He went in for a multiplicity of wives at Kirtland but was frowned down by the Saints. In 1849 James H. [sic] Strang came from Burlington, Wisconsin, where he was the head of a sort of Mormon organization and started a branch there, of which Leonard Rich was the head. It was a beggarly affair, only numbering some seventy persons. The Strang society flourished for a year or so, when he had a "revelation" to take out the wooded pillars of the Temple and "put cast-irons ones in forthwith." He said they would go to the devil if they didn’t do it. This disgusted Rich and the "Stake" and they sent Strang adrift. A Dr. McLellan, who had been one of the Twelve Apostles under Smith’s reign but who had seceded at the time of the stampede for Nauvoo and settled in Chester, thought he would embark in the Mormon business again. The idea of being President of the "Stake" tickled him exceedingly, and he strutted around Kirtland like an infatuated peacock for a year or more. The "Stake" only numbered a few persons and the Doctor concluded to retire. We did not learn what became of him. A year ago last Fall William Smith, a brother of the Prophet Joe, came from Pennsylvania to Kirtland and another attempt was made to galvanize the "dead body" of Mormonism there. Smith put on so many airs there was no living with him, and he was requested to go away. He did so, renounced Mormonism, and is now scouring the rural districts of Pennsylvania with a one-horse panorama of Palestine. There are about a dozen Mormons in Kirtland now. They meet every Sunday and are preached to by the faithful Rich, who says that he is an original Mormon "and stands where he always stood."

To-morrow we will tell something about the Mormon Bank, the Newell Conspiracy, "an original Mormon," the Unknown Tongue, etc.

Note 1: Transcription provided by H. Michael Marquardt. See also the Ohio Statesman of April 18th, 1860 and the Plain Dealer of May 18, 1859, June 20, 1859, June 13, 1860 and Aug. 31, 1860 for related news reports.

Note 2: Construction on the House of the Lord (Kirtland Temple) commenced in 1833 and the building was dedicated in 1836 though not completed. -- The statement that "in the latter part of 1836 there was a general stampede to Nauvoo, Illinois, and Jackson County, Missouri" is incorrect. The Saints had to leave Jackson County at the end of 1833 and finally forced to leave Missouri and travel east to Illinois by early 1839. -- It was in August 1846 when James J. Strang (not James H. Strang) visited Kirtland and organized a stake with a presidency and high council. In December 1846 these Saints withdrew fellowship from Strang.

Note 3: The 1860 Census for Erie Co., Pennsylvania shows William Smith living in Venango township, near the border with Chautauqua Co., New York. William's nephew, Joseph Smith III, recalled in his later years that his Uncle William had once preached for the Baptists in New York or Pennsylvania. Although "Rev." William Smith is not otherwise known to have exhibited a traveling "panorama of Palestine," it is likely that the public display was a small scale imitation of John Banvard's Holy land panorama, featured in his New York City museum during the 1850s. The New York Tribune of Dec. 27, 1852 advertised that "Banvard's Panorama of Palestine" was currently "on exhibition" in that city; while the New York Evening Telegram of Jan. 10, 1889 remembered the Banvard diorama as having been a "famous" local attraction. Mobile verisions of these mural paintings were commonplace during the mid-19th century (see Kevin J. Avery's on-line article: "Movies for Manifest Destiny: The Moving Panorama Phenomenon in America.") The Lowell Daily Courier of May 15, 1873 gave the local news for Middlesex County, Massachusetts, including the announcement, that Mr. and Mrs. S. H. Hayward had "been travelling with their panorama of Palestine the past winter.... They have exhibited their panorama in the principal cities of the New England states and many of the middle, southern and western."


Vol. XV.                         Cleveland, Ohio, Wednesday, May 18, 1859.                        No. 115.


The Former "Stake of Zion."


Something About Joe Smith, Brigham Young,
Sidney Rigdon, the Steamboat in the
Air, Plates of Gold, the Temple,
"the Unknown Tongue," &c.

The land on which the Temple is built was donated by John Johnson, a once zealous Mormon. He bolted before his death and became a scoffer at the Latter-Day faith. There are quite a number of backsliders from Mormonism in Kirtland. They joined the peculiar institution under a high press of excitement and back-slid as soon as they had let their steam off. It is barely safe to say "Mormon" to one or two of the first citizens. It causes them to wax exceeding wroth.


This now distinguished individual stood at the head of the Twelve Apostles in Kirtland. He was about thirty years old when there, and a very active member of the "Stake." He was not an educated man, but possessed a clear head, and his views and suggestions were listened to with attention in the Councils. He was of a rather jovial turn of mind, and very partial to female society. Nobody then supposed that he would become the head and front of Mormonism in case of Smith’s death. Rigdon and the Pratts each had more influence in the Church and were able men. Brass, pluck and cunning did much towards placing Brigham in his present position. The few Mormons now at Kirtland, who refuse to follow Young’s lead, say Rigdon should, by right, have succeeded to the Presidency of the Mormons on Smith’s death, though they think he would have behaved as badly as Brigham has. They say Brigham has gone to the Devil; that ambition has destroyed his morals, and they think his race is about run.


This doctrine was not openly advocated at Kirtland, although several of the leaders warmly espoused it in the Councils. Brigham Young thought a man should have as many wives as he wanted and could support, but the rank and file of the Church thought this was too rich a profusion of luxuries. The oriental minded Young said the Church would come to his views in time. It seems he was right. What a Mormon wants several wives for is more than we can see. Some Gentiles, after a short experience, think one is too many. But they must be brutes.


Our readers, many of them, recollect but too well the times of 1836 and ’37, when the "rag barons" flourished and Wild Cat Banking was all the rage. The Mormons applied to the Legislature for a Bank Charter, but failing to obtain one, they concluded that for their purposes they could do well enough without lawful authority, and accordingly established an illegal and irresponsible concern, of which Sidney Rigdon was President, and Joseph Smith, Jr., Cashier. It was ostensibly a Savings Bank, and Bills were issued on the strength of deposits. Those who claimed that the Bank failed because Joe Smith did not understand financeering must certainly have been in error -- for he "managed" the institution so adroitly as to avoid the payment of either billholders or depositors[.] The thing did not fail on account of mismanagement altogether, but for want of public confidence. Some $50,000 of the bills were issued, and the people hereabouts swindled to that amount. A friend in Kirtland showed us a bill which he had preserved as a sort of curiosity. It looks as much like money as any of the current "rags" of the present day, and reads as follows:
"The Kirtland Safety Society’s Bank will pay ONE DOLLAR on
Demand to J. Smith or order.
                                            KIRTLAND, OHIO, Jan. 8, 1837.
      J. SMITH, JR., Cashier.                 S. RIGDON, President."


The specially inspired Mormon can speak in the unknown tongue. We had the felicity of hearing a hymn sung and a short discourse spoken in this tongue. It is strange gibberish, and sounds like an unhappy mixture of dislocated Choctaw and staggering Dutch. Martin Harris, an old, "original" Mormon, spoke and translated the following for our especial benefit:
Halle lume varieri bertona sides; Banki clellandri quisby mot lelandri tenslums; Halle le-ar,


Here, at the stake of Zion, stand we. Truth is our’s. Come with us and be saved, all ye.


Sometime in 1834-35 Joe Smith was indicted by the Grand Jury of Geauga County for a conspiracy to murder one Grandison Newell, a Gentile, residing near Kirtland -- a man who had made himself obnoxious to the Saints by some means to us unknown. It seems that Joe, when he had a hard job on hand, informed his deluded followers that he had received a revelation, a command from the Most High that it shoule be done. So in this case: he informed Wilber Denton and M. C. Davis members of his Church, that it was the will of God that they should kill Newell. Those men watched, with rifle in hand, about the premises of Newell, for three days and nights for the purpose of executing the Prophet’s order, but it seems that their want of faith in Smith or their fears of the gallows, deterred them from executing the murderous command. Smith procured the services of eminent counsel, to defend him -- and when the trial occurred at Chardon, in 1836 [sic - 1837], it is said that the Mormons, by dint of "hard swearing," succeeded in obtaining for their beloved Prophet a verdict of acquittal.


A Hebrew school was at one time established by the Mormons -- the attic of the Temple being used for that purpose. It was taught by Josiah Sissons [sic], a Jew. Among the pupils were Brigham Young, Perley P. Pratt, Orson Pratt, Martin Haines [sic], and Heber C. Kimball.


We found at Kirtland one of the founders of the Mormon Church -- an "original" Mormon named Martin Harris. He is at the head of the little remnant of the Church who adhere to the faith and usages of the sect as it was in its infancy. He believes in the Book of Mormon -- that Joe Smith was at one time a true Prophet, but that he "fell from grace" while at Kirtland, and that the present Church, under Brigham Young, is corrupt, wicked, and full of abominations. Harris resided in Palmyra, N. Y., at the time the mysterious gold plates from which the Book of Mormon is a pretended translation, were dug from the ground by Joe Smith. He was one of the "three witnesses" to the finding of the plates, &c. He tells us that the plates were of the thickness of tin, 7 inches long by 7 inches wide, some two hundred in number, and he believes were pure gold. He says that these plates are now in the possession of an Angel named Maroni (a Mormon angel, we take it,) and that this angel lately showed the plates to a man in Fairport. Harris claims to have performed many miracles, such as healing the sick by the "laying on of hands," as it is recorded of the Apostles of ancient times. He believes in the "gift of tongues," one of the most senseless of their many silly delusions. He tells us that he has talked with God and seen Christ face to face. We do not think he designs to impose upon any one by these miraculous stories, for he seems to be honest, though wofully deluded. When asked to explain the meaning of Urim and Thummim as used in the Bible, he informed us that they were two small stones -- that it was customary for the Jewish Priests, in Mosaic times, to look into these stones once a year for the purpose of receiving wise instructions. He says that they were at one time in the possession of Joe Smith -- that he, Harris, looked into them and saw Christ, but was informed in a revelation that if he looked again he would "see God and die.["]

At one time some of the Mormons claimed to have seen a long boat traveling high in the air and when directly over Kirtland, at an altitude of 1000 feet, it parted, one half falling to and disappearing in the earth, and the other half ascending heavenward out of sight. It was supposed to be emblematical of the destiny of the world, the Mormon portion being passengers on the "upward bound" half of the aerial ark. Harris says he did not see this miracle, and we are strongly inclined to believe him. He is now an old man, aged 76 years -- was once rich but has expended his entire fortune for the Church. He furnished money to publish the first edition of the Book of Mormon, and gave large amounts of money to the Smiths, Joe and Hiram. He has consulted many of the most learned men in the country -- among them Dr. Mitchell, M. M. Noah, and Prof. Anthon of N. Y. -- in reference to the mysterious plates, and yet none of them were able to convince him that he had been imposed upon by cunning and crafty men. He says that God has chosen the "weak to confound the wise," meaning that he, a poor illiterate man, has been selected as the chosen instrument of God for the regeneration of the world. He says that Joel Tiffany, well known as a leading Spiritualist some time since, has been out from New York lately on a visit to him, Harris, and that for four successive days without intermission, he unfolded the mysteries of godliness to Joel, which the latter copied at the time and is about to publish. Judging from what we know of Harris, we think Tiffany must have got a supply of extravagant fantasies altogether ahead of anything which he could have originated himself,even in his wildest moments.

At the time of the Mormon hegira to Missouri, this same Harris furnished money to purchase land for a town site. He took a deed in his own name, and now holds, as we learned from him and others, a good title in fee simple to a large portion of the town of Independence, Jackson Co., Mo. He has been offered large sums of money (once as high as $60,000) for his title, but he says God will not permit him to sell, and sell he won’t. He informed us that Gov. Boggs, who, it will be remembered, was assassinated [sic] by the Mormons, was a fine man, and that he, Harris, had no doubt but Boggs was murdered by Porter Rockwell, a desperado, who was one of the early Mormons in Kirtland, and who is now a Chief in the Danite band at Salt Lake.

Such are some of the vagaries believed in by the Latter Day Saints when first established. Add to these Spiritual-wifery and several other new fangled notions of the followers of Brigham Young, and you will get a tolerably clear idea of the amount of credulity or idiocy or rascality required to make a regular full blown Mormon.


Had the Mormons remained in Kirtland -- had not public opinion among the Gentiles and the disreputable conduct of some of the leaders, driven them away -- there can be no doubt that the place would now be a city of 40,000 inhabitants, and perhaps more. Probably a better location for an inland city cannot be found in America. Now it is a charming and picturesque spot at this season, and located right in the heart of one of the finest countries in the world. It will richly repay a visit.

Note 1: Transcription and part of notes provided by H. Michael Marquardt. This interview was published on May 18, 1859 the day Martin Harris became seventy-six years old. For another, nearly contemporary mention of Harris at Kirtland, see the June 13, 1860 issue of the Cleveland Plain Dealer.

Note 2: John Johnson, Sr., was born on April 11, 1779 in Chesterfield, Cheshire Co., New Hampshire. He became a Mormon perhaps as early as February of 1831. He moved from his home in Hiram, Ohio, to Kirtland, late in 1832 and in the summer of 1833 helped secure the Temple site by paying off a $2000 mortgage held by Joseph Coe. He was ordained a high priest and admitted to the "United Firm" and the Kirtland High Council, but in September of 1837 he was dropped from the High Council for some unspecified reason. The following year he withdrew from the Mormons, but continued living at Kirtland, where he died on July 30, 1843. See Deseret News of May 26, 1858. The above mention in the Cleveland paper may have been the first published notice of Johnson having left the Mormon Church. It is unknown whether he was associated with the Warren Parrish Latter Day Saint faction of 1838.

Note 3: Thomas B. Marsh, and not Brigham Young, was President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles at Kirtland. -- The idea that Brigham Young espoused spiritual wifeism in Church councils at Kirtland is speculation.

Note 4: The trial relating to the alleged conspiracy of Joseph Smith wanting Grandison Newell killed was held in 1837 and not in 1834-35 or 1836. After hearing from a number of witnesses, the State dropped the charges against Smith.

Note 5: The Hebrew school was taught by Joshua Seixas (not "Josiah Sissons"), from January 26 to March 29, 1836. The reporter mentions "Martin Haines" as a pupil. The correct name would be Martin Harris. It is not known if Harris was a student when the classes were held. -- John Pulsipher, who was ten years old at the time, remembered the steamboat incident occurring in March 1838. He said that Elder Beaman, who died on November 20, 1837, was at the "bow of the Boat swinging his hat and singing a well known hymn." His description is different than the newspaper account ("Diary of John Pulsipher," typed copy, L. Tom Perry Special Collections, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah).

Note 6: Joel Tiffany, editor of the Spiritualist publication Tiffany’s Monthly, visited Martin Harris in January 1859. He wrote of Harris, "He does not sympathize with Brigham Young and the Salt Lake Church. He considers them apostates from the true faith; and as being under the influence of the devil. Mr. Harris says, that the pretended church of 'Latter Day Saints,' are in reality 'latter day devils,' and that himself and a very few others are the only genuine Mormons left" ("Mormonism," Tiffany’s Monthly 5 [May 1859]:50, New York City, New York). The interview with Martin Harris was published in the August 1859 issue of the periodical. -- The attempted assassination of Lilburn W. Boggs occurred in May 1842. It was reported that Orrin Porter Rockwell was involved. Rockwell was acquitted of that shooting. Boggs was living in California at the time of the Plain Dealer interview and died in 1860.


Vol. ?                                 Cincinnati, Monday, May 23, 1859.                                 No. ?

MORMON CRUELTIES. -- The Salt Lake Valley Tan of April 19th says:

Cutting of throats is the prescribed mode of murder by which the victims of eccleiastical mercy (?) are invariably sacrificed, and is the penalty attached to the violation of the oaths in the first degree of the mysterious and terrible endowment ceremonies. The penalty attached to the violation of the oath in the second endowment degree is to have the throat cut, and the heart plucked out with the most agonizing details. In the third or last degree, in addition to the above, the most horrible mutilation of the body, the ripping across of the navel, and the tearing out of the bowels in the most disgusting manner, are the prescribed penalties of a violation of the terrible secrets of Mormonism.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XV.                             Cleveland, Ohio, Monday, June 20, 1859.                             No. 143?.


==> ONE OF THE ORIGINAL MORMONS. -- Leonard Rich, one of the original Mormons at Kirtland, was in this city Saturday. He was President of the Seventies, Elder, &c., under Jo. Smith's regime at that place. When spiritual wifeism was introduced he bolted. He claims to be an original, unadulterated Mormon. He is a candid man, and will probably lecture in this city before long. he is personally familiar with the rise, progress and fall of Mormonism in Kirtland, and could no doubt give an entertaining lecture.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. ?                             Cincinnati, Ohio, Saturday, October 15, 1859.                             No. ?


Revival Among the Latter Day Saints.

Eds. Com.: -- A new organization of Latter Day Saints is springing up, which will do more to check the licentiousness and high-handed wickedness of the Salt Lake Mormon Church, than all the plans that have been proposed. A Conference, which continued [four] days, commenced on the 6th inst., near Sandwich, De Kalb County, Ill., and although it was held at a retired farm-house, about 500 persons were in attendance. Delegates and members from nearly all parts of Illinois, and from Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin and Iowa, were there. This organization will not be completed until a son of Joseph Smith presides over it, but it is now sending forth elders to proclaim against the iniquities of the Salt Lake Church, as an apostacy from the faith of the Latter Day Saints, and to preach the original doctrines of the Church. A monthly periodical will be published in this city forthwith, to be called the True Latter-Day Saints' and Anti-Polygamists' Organ. -- Elders are to be sent to Utah to reclaim those backsliders, and if these elders are cut down while engaged in the work, "the blood of the martyrs will be the seed of the church." The speakers at the Conference expressed an abhorrence of the evils which had overthrown the church, and a determination to expel such persons from the church in the future. They spoke with extraordinary energy and Divine influence, and with unbounded love for the faithful, and also for the backsliders, and for all mankind. We hope that all good citizens will cast no obstacle in our way, while we labor for the eradication of this foul stain, and that the conductors of newspapers will make known the remedy which God hath provided for this great wickedness.     ISAAC SHEEN.

Note 1: The above communication from RLDS Elder Isaac Sheen to the Cincinnati Commercial was reprinted in the Oct. 19, 1859 issue of the New York Times, which begins with this editorial preface: "The following curious statement appears in the Cincinnati Commercial." See also the Saints' Herald of January, 1860.

Note 2: One of Elder Sheen's earlier letters, was published in the Saturday Evening Post, in which he said: "The Salt Lake apostles also excuse themselves by saying that Joseph Smith taught the spiritual wife doctrine, but this excuse is as weak as their excuse concerning the ancient kings and patriarchs. Joseph Smith repented of his connection with this doctrine, and said it was of the devil. He caused the revelations on that subject to be burned."



Vol. 33.                       Hamilton, Ohio, Thirsday, November 3, 1859.                       No. 1.


The family of the great Mormon prophet, Joe Smith, still dwells in Nauvoo. No persuasions can prevail on them to remove to Utah. His widow has married again, and with her husband keeps the mansion House, the only house that the city affords. The oldest son, who bears his father's name of Joseph, is a Justice of the Peace, and a useful and much respected citizen. Great inducements have been offered him to remove to Great Salt Lake City, but he steadily resists all such importunities.

Notes: (forthcoming)

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